Obscene Comedy Central channel pulled off air

Entertainment channel Comedy Central was taken off air for six days on Wednesday after a Delhi high court upheld the information and broadcasting ministry’s 2013 decision for a 10-day ban for airing ‘obscene and vulgar’ content.

The order that came into effect from midnight resulted from a court battle between the government and media company Viacom 18, which launched the 24-hour English-language channel in India in January 2012.

Two of the channel’s shows — Stand Up Club and Popcorn — came under scrutiny last year for showing content that was considered indecent and “appeared to deprave, corrupt and injure the public morality and morals”.

The scenes “depicted women as a commodity of sex” and posed a threat to “public morality or morals,” according to a notice issued to the broadcaster at the time.

The channel was shut down for four days last year but was allowed to resume broadcast pending an appeal against the ban that was finally heard on Monday.

The judges ruled the government acted lawfully and the channel must go off air for the remaining six days of the original ban.


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