Censorship Issues For Over The Top Services – (NETFLIX And Hotstar)

Gone are the days when satellite TV’s were ruling the Indian TV industry. Now, are the times of internet based channels like Netflix, Hotstar, Amazon Prime video and more, known as the Over-the-top (OTT) services. Being an internet based service they can be accessed anywhere and anytime on devices like smartphones and tablets too other than smart TVS, desktops and laptops. These services are known as over the top because the service does not need you to subscribe to a traditional cable channel besides providing the liberty to choose whatever they want to watch as per their choice and time. A hardware device, an internet connection, download the app, get the subscription plan and you are on.

Over the top Service (OTT) types

Well, on one side it’s getting convenient for viewers to watch anything they want anytime, there’s a flipside to it too. The content could be unsuitable for viewers of a certain age group particularly under age audience. So, the topic to regulate the content is of vital importance and needs to be looked at, with keen interest, more so. The types of over the top services include –

  1. Ad supported video on demand (AVOD) – A free service it gets its revenue from the ads it broadcasts along with video content.

  2. Subscription based video on demand (SVOD) – This is a paid service where you can access a whole library of video by paying a fixed amount on a daily, weekly or monthly basis.

  3. Transactional video on demand (TVOD) – This is a pay per view service and needs no subscription.

With the advent of these services, it won’t be a surprise if you find people hooked to their smart phones or tablets while having lunch break or commuting on a bus or a metro. Another vital aspect of it is that the content that is broadcasted is not scrutinized and is uncertified, vulgar, pornographic, legally restricted and at times sexually explicit as well. There have been PILs / petitions against shows like Game or Thrones and Sacred Games about objectifying women as well and requesting to frame guidelines for the same. One such petition was dismissed by the Delhi high-court stating that it could not frame any guidelines because there were stringent provisions vide the information technology act, 2000 already in place. When the petition was taken to the Supreme court, it has issued notice to the center in order to regulate the content on OTT platforms dated May 5, 2019. Well, this means that it will take some time for the OTT content to get regulated.

*Sourced from the Internet

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Five Facts You Need To Know About Ancestral Property

There is a lot of unawareness around ancestral property rights amongst us. A reason is ignorance and even amendments in the law. One of the many questions that are commonly asked around ancestral property laws that people keep pondering upon or enquiring from friends and acquaintances is about women’s share in ancestral property. Here’s run down five facts around ancestral property rights you need to know and around daughter’s share as well –

  1. Ancestral property means the property that is inherited up to four generations. As in from father to great great grandfather.

  2. The right to ancestral property is considered to be based on birth and not after the death of the owner.

  3. The ancestral character is not considered if the partition or division of the property is already done through a deed or mutual basis within the family.

  4. The division of the property is done not on the basis of per capita but on the basis of per stripe. First the share of each generation is determined. Later the subdivision is done for the remaining generations. Also, every generation does inherit from its predecessor.

  5. Will and gift based properties are not included in ancestral properties.

  6. If a father gifts a property to son, it is not included under ancestral properties.

  7. If a self-acquired property is used in common it can be included under ancestral properties.

  8. But, if the father wants to disinherit his son from a self-acquired property within the ancestral property, he can do so but the son still has rights over ancestral property

  9. Before 2005, only sons had rights to ancestral property. But, in 2005 the Supreme court amended the law providing rights to a daughter whether married or not, in ancestral property. The court later clarified that if the father has died before the amendment of the Hindu law in 2005, the daughter does not have any right to ancestral property.

Well, theses day women are becoming more and more aware of their rights but even today there are many women and even people who aren’t really aware about ancestral rights or have a lot of queries around the same. The aforementioned are a few facts that might just help you clear some of your doubts around the same.

*Sourced from the Internet

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Legal Reforms In India Post Nirbhaya Rape

While the statistics of rape cases in India are horrifying, the one case that completely shook the country and made one billion people rise in unison against this heinous crime was the Nirbhaya episode. A rape that left people numb and startled with its severity brought under the scanner not only the state of women safety in the country but even the law system which the people do not fear. Its five years past this incident that sparked off many legal reforms in the country. Here’s a run-down some of the major reformations around the rape crime in country.

Nirbhaya Rape

Criminal law amendment 2013 – This law brought about changes in the way to deal with juvenile offenders and the facility of medico-legal care to be given to victims/ survivors of sexual assaults. The major change was in the rape definition. As per the IPC rape was retained as different offence which not only included vagina penetration but also anus or mouth. Even a penetration without consent to be considered under rape.

Fast Track Courts to deal Rape Cases – A three-member committee was formed in December 2012 for speeding up the trial process through fast-track courts so the victims get the justice that too without undue delay.

Harsher Punishments – Other than the minimum of seven years of prison for rape, separate punishments for repeat offenders were also introduced with the provision of death sentence added to it.

Abolishment of Two Finger Test – The two-finger test which only added to victim shaming further was officially abolished because it never helped in telling anything about the heinous crime and was only to know the history which was of no relevance to the crime.

Marital Rape – The committee also suggested to bring non-consensual martial intercourse within the scope of rape.

Sexual Assault Considerations – The committee also recommended that even non-penetrative offenses be brought under the scanner of sexual assault.

Juvenile Justice Amendment 2015 – The Nirbhaya rape case involved a juvenile/minor as well who walked free post three years of living in the juvenile home. But, this did bring about a change in the law associated with juvenile justice. The main amendment made around it was trying a juvenile in the age bracket of 16-18 years committing heinous crimes like rape, murder, and robbery as an adult. The same would be done based on the judgment of the juvenile board members.

Not only amendment but the government has also been swift in creating awareness programs beginning at the grass-root levels and educate children about sex and literacy programs for women, in order to empower them.

Having said that, Delhi is still under the dark shadow of these crimes but it has definitely paved a way towards improving the state of safety of women and brought forth the fact that the society is determined to take action against such issues.

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Search and Siezures Law in India – Police Powers

While it is the duty of the police to ensure law and order in the society, we all have heard of instances where police have crossed their lines and invaded our human rights. But, many of us due to ignorance are not able to take suitable measures to use our rights when the time comes. So, here is a brief overview about police powers related to search and seizures in India.

Search and Siezures Law in India

Police Interrogation – While there is no law where you can skip police interrogation when normally fit and stopped for one, its only good for you to answer them like a lawful citizen. If you do not cooperate with interrogation they do have the powers to arrest you.

Eg. You are driving on the road in the wee hours of the night and the police stop you. They might want to check your car for any illegal weapons or if its a dry area for unauthorized alcohol. At such a point you need to stop and cooperate further.

Search – Usually a search warrant is required as per the 1973 Criminal Procedure Code of India when it comes to searching your house or offices, but if there is no time to attain the warrant and an immediate search is important they can do so. But, the search has to be carried out in presence of the owners and the seized items if any need to be listed. Two witnesses have to be present alongside as well. Police can carry out a search in your house or office without a warrant if they suspect that you have been hiding a criminal of stuff that is considered unlawful like drugs , etc. As for shared house, in case you are not present, shared areas can be searched by police without warrant but not your private stuff. Police can also search without permission a towed or seized car.

So, it’s advisable for you to cooperate with them and be aware of the law. Having said that if you find any misbehavior or unnecessary harassment from the police, you might as well file your complaint with the human rights commission.

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