BCCC asks TV channels to cut down lewd talk in comedy shows

Comedy circus

Upset at the use of double meaning dialogues in television comedy shows, the Broadcasting Content Complaint Council (BCCC) today asked entertainment channels to not carry "crass, abusive, vulgar and double-meaning language with sexual overtones in the name of humour."

In an advisory issued today, the Council, which is the self-regulatory body of the TV industry, has asked channels to not cross the limits in humour.

The Council said it had received many complaints against double-meaning dialogues used in 'comedy shows' telecast on various general entertainment channels.

"The BCCC expresses its concern over this trend, which often ranges on crass, abusive, vulgar and double-meaning language with sexual overtones in the name of humour," the regulatory body said.

"The BCCC feels that at times, such comedy shows cross the threshold of 'generally accepted standards' in terms of language and reflect the indelicate attitude of participants," it added.

Sometimes, the content of the so-called jokes is "demeaning and smutty," the advisory said.

The Council suggested that channels should take care while scheduling such comedy shows so that they have minimal impact on diverse Indian viewers.

It also advised channels to use friendly banters without being derisive to any community, religion and individual.

"Comedy is an intrinsic part of our life and it is only natural that TV channels produce and telecast programmes that are humorous and light-hearted. The BCCC, however, feels that the line that divides healthy comedy from vulgarity, obscenity and double-meaning language must be strictly adhered to," BCCC Chairperson Justice (Retd) AP Shah said.

"This is necessary to ensure that the social message sent across through various comedy shows to millions of viewers does not overstep this all-important threshold. We are confident that the channels which telecast comedy shows will keep this in mind," Shah added.

The Council said it had no intention of curtailing artistic freedom but added that channels should exercise discretion to make television viewing more pleasurable and not let such comedy shows become platforms for making lewd remarks.

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