Jaipur, Dec 20 : The Rajasthan High Court today issued a notice to the Centre questioning the prohibition of condom advertisements on television between 6 am and 10 pm.
The division bench, led by Chief Justice Pradeep Nandrajog and D. C. Somani, sought a reply from the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting, the government’s principal secretary and the health secretary. The court was hearing a petition filed by a non profit organisation, which has called the order “arbitrary and meaningless.”
On December 11, the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting issued an advisory to television channels, saying such advertisements are indecent for viewing by children, and should be aired only between 10 pm and 6 am.
Global Alliance for Human Rights, which works for the welfare of HIV patients, had said that the order violates the Constitution and the government gave no “reasonable explanation” for it. Banning advertisements of condoms would hinder awareness programmes for safe sex, the petition said.
The society and the government have responsibility to ensure that teenagers get the necessary information about the physiological and emotional changes they go through, the petition said. Such information is essential so that they make informed choices, it said.
The organisation also wants the government to issue guidelines for advertising condoms.