Draft on OTT platform policy completed: Hasan
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Draft on OTT platform policy completed: Hasan

Information and Broadcasting Minister Dr. Hasan Mahmud today informed that his ministry had made the policy draft on OTT (over-the-top) platform.

“OTT platform is now a reality of growing demand. But, there is no approval system for releasing cinema, drama, web series, or any other content on the OTT platform. We’ve already made a primary draft on the policy for OTT platform,” he told newsmen at the meeting room of his ministry at Secretariat.

The minister hoped that his ministry could issue a notification of the policy soon.

Referring to a recent meeting with his Indian counterpart in New Delhi, Hasan said they (India) had issued a notification on February last in this regard. He added that all OTT platforms of India should have followed the rules, and actions would be taken in case of policy deviation.

He said that it is very tough to censor the contents of the OTT platform through the censor board. “It is easy to censor cinemas as 50 to 100 films are released every year. But, it is not easy to censor hundreds of contents of OTT platforms. For this, we have made a draft of the policy, which will publish as notification after scrutiny,” he added.

He said the policy is to protect the culture and heritage from its deviation and lead the society and its people, including youths.

The minister said that currently, social media is added with mass media. Social media has given the people unfettered opportunity to express their own opinion, said Hasan, also Awami League, joint general secretary.

At the same time, he said, it was also seen that social media was being used to create instability in the society and to spread propaganda against the government or individual.

The minister said that the mainstream media are working correctly. But some (people) tried to spread rumors and create confusion among the countrymen through social media from home and abroad, he added, even during the COVID-19 situation.

He said that his ministry has already been started many works, including giving registrations to IP TV and online news portals to bring discipline.

But, he said that some specific people had been carried out propaganda from abroad by using online news portals. “We have taken actions against them on behalf of the government through coordination of other ministries. But, in this case, many times, we didn’t get proper support which is needed from the service providers. For this, we are discussing with the service providers,” he added.

The minister said that a decision had been taken to take actions against those specific persons as per the existing law of that country from where they carry out the propaganda.

He said that the ‘Reporters sans frontières’ has published news over the Prime Minister by using highly offensive words. “We, on behalf of the information ministry, have protested the news that we will take action if the news is not corrected. The office of the ‘Reporters sans frontières’ is in Paris. A legal notice has been sent through France lawyer. They can’t publish such report targeting any person as per the law of France or even the law of European Union,” said Hasan.

He said that a decision had been taken to take legal actions against those persons who will do such works from other countries.

Replying to a query over a comment of BNP on the issue of the elections, the minister said that the recurrence of BNP’s mistakes like the 2014 and 2018 elections would be suicidal for them. “BNP is giving same statements from 2014, and they tried to foil the polls of 2014. They torched about 500 voting centers and torched the new books of school students. Even, they killed many people, including polling officers,” he added.

But, he said that they could not foil the elections. “I think they could get more good results if they took part seriously in the 2018 polls from the beginning,” Hasan added.

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