Cabinet Approves Cinematograph (Amendment) Bill 2023 to Curb Piracy and Revamp Film Classification
The Union Cabinet has given its nod to the Cinematograph (Amendment) Bill 2023, aimed at curbing the transmission of pirated film content over the internet, according to Information and Broadcasting Minister Anurag Thakur. The Bill also includes provisions to revamp the current practice of film classification by age group instead of the current practice of ‘U’, ‘A’, and ‘UA’.
Age-Based Film Classification System
The new Bill’s provisions include the classification of films on the basis of age group, instead of the current ‘U’, ‘A’, and ‘UA’ system. The ‘U’ classification stands for unrestricted public exhibition, while ‘A’ is restricted to adult audiences. ‘UA’ is for unrestricted public exhibition subject to parental guidance for children below the age of 12. The proposed age-based classification will align India with international standards and improve the safety of children watching movies.
The Bill includes measures to curb the piracy of film content transmitted over the internet. The provisions will be critical in protecting copyright and enabling the blocking of websites transmitting pirated content. This step will go a long way in safeguarding the interests of the film industry and promoting creativity while fostering innovation.
Extensive Consultations with Stakeholders
The Bill has been developed following consultations with various stakeholders, including the film industry. The proposed amendments incorporate best practices from across the world and take into account the feedback received from the various stakeholders. The Bill’s broad consultation ensures that it will satisfy the expectations of the industry and promote creativity without controversy.
The Cinematograph (Amendment) Bill 2023 will be introduced in the upcoming session of Parliament. Information and Broadcasting Minister Anurag Thakur has refrained from sharing additional details of the Bill, and the provisions will become clear once the draft legislation is introduced in Parliament.
The Cinematograph (Amendment) Bill 2023’s approval is a welcome development for the Indian film industry, which has been grappling with piracy-related issues for a long time. The age-based classification system and anti-piracy measures will go a long way in ensuring the protection of intellectual property rights and promoting creativity while fostering innovation. The Bill’s development through extensive consultations with stakeholders also ensures that it will address their concerns without creating any controversy. Overall, the Bill’s approval by the Union Cabinet is a positive step towards the promotion and growth of the Indian film industry.