Union Home Ministry (MHA) shies away from the responsibility of taking a decision on issuing a security clearance to economic offenders and other crimes involved persons applying for TV and Radio channel licenses. The response of the Home Ministry, with the knowledge of Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh, came after the suggestion of Information Broadcasting Ministry (I&B) to the MHA to take a stand on the issue. Earlier I&B Ministry under Smriti Irani asked Home Ministry to take a clear stand on issuing security clearance to persons involved in economic offences and other crimes during the process of allotting TV and Radio channel licenses.
It appears as though the Home Ministry, after its debacle in the SUN TV issue, decided that this time it will not exercise its power. After being arm twisted in the SUN TV issue, the MHA’s powers were cut down. In those days Arun Jaitley was the I&B Minister who had supported SUN TV. Now the I&B Ministry under the new Minister Smriti Irani had decided that Home Ministry should be the final authority in granting a security clearance to promoters who apply for TV and Radio channels. But the Home Ministry under Rajnath Singh decided not to exercise its power. MHA’s stand is that they will only give inputs and did not take a stand about giving license to economic offenders!!!
In a dilly-dallying response to the I&B Ministry, Home Ministry said that the I&B Ministry should take a call on the matter and they will only give additional inputs about the promoters. The question is why Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh shies away even after the I&B Ministry asked them to exercise their powers. Once bitten twice shy syndrome?
The letter of Home Ministry to I&B Ministry dated September 14 is published below:
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