‘Switch off TV when Sanskrit news is read’

Disposing of a petition that challenged the telecast of Sanskrit news on Doordarshan channel, the Madurai Bench of the Madras High Court observed that there were matters of greater social concern which had to be addressed and such petty issues should not be looked into by it.

A Division Bench of Chief Justice Sanjib Banerjee and Justice M.M. Sundresh observed, “For one, Doordarshan channel has limited viewership. Secondly, it is a matter for the government to decide. Thirdly, the news read in Sanskrit hardly takes up a fraction of the entire day.”

Further, the judges observed that when the writ petitioner did not find Sanskrit to be tasteful or useful, there was no compulsion for him to tune in and it was open to him to switch off the TV when Sanskrit news was read and get some other form of entertainment.

The judges hoped that the petitioner would keep up his public spirit and bring matters involving public interest to the court. The writ petition was disposed of with liberty to the petitioner to make an appropriate representation to authorities concerned.

The court was hearing the petition filed by advocate S. Muthukumar of Madurai who had sought a direction to forbear the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting, Prasar Bharati and Doordarshan from telecasting Sanskrit news in Doordarshan’s Tamil language regional channel Podhigai.

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