A day after News Broadcasters Association (NBA) announced that it would be blacking out IPL coverage including its songs, footage or even use of the word ‘IPL’, the I&B ministry has deputed a senior official to intervene for a possible resolution in the matter.
The move comes in response to a communication sent by international news agencies late on Wednesday evening to the ministry. ‘‘We have been approached by international news agencies to intervene. The ministry has already appointed a senior official for a possible resolution,’’ a source said. Sources said that special secretary in the ministry UK Varma had been asked to look in to the matter and talk to news broadcasters and the IPL management.
Channels have protested against the media guidelines – introduced by IPL – saying that it was a clear violation of the agreement reached between the two parties in 2008. In a statement NBA – that has 34 members – had said that IPL and the official broadcaster Set Max had taken a position ‘‘unilaterally’’ forcing news channels to desist from coverage in relation to IPL or its proposed matches.
The media guidelines are a major departure from 2008 where channels have to adhere to a limit of 7 minutes for a full day of IPL coverage. Also, footage cannot be repeated more than three times a day while channels are expected to keep a minimum delay of 30 minutes from the live telecast against just 5 minutes in 2008. Restrictive guidelines on media ownership of news agencies is another contentious issue.