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Report No. 109

5.9. Possible approach towards defining obscenity.-

This ruling of the American Supreme Court, it must be pointed out, does not seek to define "indecency". It upholds the action of Federal Communications Commission in restraining an indecent programme, in the context of the time at which, and the manner in which, the matter was, broadcast. Infact, the ruling indirectly draws attention to the constitutional aspect, and reminds us that a restraint on speech and expression-including a restraint on indecent speech-must still pass the constitutional test. It is possible that the ambiguity residing in the expression "indecent" could, to some extent, be reduced if the magnitude of the vice is defined by some qualifying words, which would introduce a modicum of precision. We shall make a concrete suggestion later.1

1. Para. 5.14, infra.

Obscene and Indecent Advertisements and Displays - Sections 292, 293 of the Indian Penal Code Back

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