Ban proposed on obscene depiction of women on Net
- The Centre has proposed amendments to the Indecent Representation of Women Act, 1986, to include digital and internet-based communication services.
- The Ministry of Women and Child Development has banded the obscene depiction of women on the Internet and on SMS/MMS by amending the Indecent Representation of Women Act, 1986.
- Provision of the Indecent Representation of Women Act:
- The IRW Act provides for punishment of up to two years in jail for an offence committed for the first time Imprisonment of six months to five years for a second conviction.
- The Ministry suggested that stricter punishments be awarded for such crimes on par with those recommended under the IT Act, 2008.
- Sections 67 and 67A of the IT Act lay down a punishment of three to five years for circulating obscene material and five to seven years for circulating sexually explicit material, respectively.
- The Ministry has proposed amendment in definition of the term ‘advertisement’ which include:
- Digital form or electronic form or hoardings, or through SMS, MMS, etc
- Any advertisement such as notice, circular, label, wrapper or other document, visible representation.
- It seeks to prohibit indecent representation of women through advertisements, publications, writings, paintings, figures, among others.
- The amendment proposed setting up a central authority under the National Commission of Women, including representatives from:
- Advertising Standards Council of India
- Press Council of India
- Ministry of Information and Broadcasting and
- One member with experience of working on women’s issues.
- The Ministry has decided to widen the scope of the law due to technological revolution has led to development of new forms of communication, such as, Whats app, Chat On, Snap chat, Instagram etc.