Report No. 255
Recommendations by TRAI
7.33.4. TRAI, in August 2014, provided a set of recommendations pertaining to media ownership wherein it emphasized that paid news should be defined comprehensively and a framework should be established for examining complaints and taking punitive action against the defaulting media entities. It noted that there is little doubt that an institutional response addressing both substantive and procedural issues including evidentiary rules is needed to curb the menace.284
284. Recommendations on Issues Relating to Media Ownership, August 12, 2014,
<http://www.trai.gov.in/WriteReadData/Recommendation/Documents/Recommendations%20on%20Media%20Ownership.pdf>, at para 5.68
7.33.5. It strongly recommended that entities related to political bodies, religious bodies, urban local governing bodies, Panchayati Raj, other publicly funded bodies, and Central and State Government ministries, departments, companies, undertakings, joint ventures, and government-funded entities and affiliates be barred from entering into broadcasting and TV channel distribution sectors.285 Further, it also suggested that the Press Council of India must be fully empowered to adjudicate the complaints of "paid news' and give final judgments in the matter.
285. Id., at para 5.74