Condom ads without sexually explicit content can be aired before 10pm: I&B ministry
Advertisements on safe sex may be continued to be promoted without sexually objectifying and/or without carrying sexually explicit content, says the I&B ministry
New Delhi: Condom ads can be shown round the clock provided they are not sexually titillating, the union government said in a fresh clarification, softening its earlier position that condom commercials should not be aired between 6am and 10pm.
In a clarification dated 20 December issued to the health and family welfare ministry, the information and broadcasting (I&B) ministry said advertisements that do not sexually objectify women and “are aimed at informing citizens regarding devices/products/medical interventions are not covered in the said advisory.”
“...the said advisory only pertains to sexually explicit content being used to market certain condom brands that titillate the audience from the PR perspective… It is therefore clarified that advertisements on safe sex may be continued to be promoted without sexually objectifying and/or without carrying sexually explicit content and without violating the above (Cable Television Networks Rules, 1994) codes,” the ministry added.
To be sure, the clarification has not been officially issued by the I&B ministry but has been shared with the ministry of health and family welfare, in response to the latter’s concerns over the National Aids Control Organization (NACO) advertisements. “The health ministry had reached out to I&B ministry on NACO ads and I&B has shared this fresh clarification. The latter is still awaiting the health ministry’s response on this and hence, has not officially issued the clarification,” said a ministry official on the condition of anonymity.
On 11 December, the I&B ministry, in an advisory, had said that condom ads should only be aired between 10pm and 6am to avoid exposure of such material to children and to ensure strict adherence to the provisions contained in the Cable Television Networks Rules, 1994.
The ministry had cited rules 7(7) and 7(8) of the Cable Television Networks Rules that “no advertisement which endangers the safety of children or creates in them any interest in unhealthy practices or shows them begging or in an undignified or indecent manner shall be carried in the cable service” and “indecent, vulgar, suggestive, repulsive or offensive themes or treatment shall be avoided in all advertisements.”
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