Panaji, June 2 :
The Press Council of India (PCI) should be renamed and its scope should be expanded to include television as well as web and social media, its chairman Markandey Katju said Monday.
The former Supreme Court judge also said the council should be given powers to punish media publications, instead of handing down mere admonishment.
“For better regulation, both TV and electronic media, which includes web and social media, should be brought under the Press Council of India. It should also be renamed as Media Council,” said Katju at a press conference here.
Members of the PCI are in Goa to participate in their annual meeting.
Katju said control over the media sector was necessary and that errant media persons should be punished just in the way the bar council acts against lawyers and the medical fraternity acts against errant doctors.
“The council currently has only powers of admonishment and censure. We need to have powers to fine and suspend licences for us to be effective,” Katju said, adding that Council had made recommendations to the effect on several occasions, but to no avail.
Commenting on the trend of political parties starting their own media platforms, Katju said there was no law to bar them from starting media outfits.
The PCI chairman also credited the media for what he described “fair” reportage of the recently concluded Lok Sabha election. “I did not see basically anything wrong with the reporting by the media,” he said.