Tamil Nadu seeks review of SC verdict banning politicians' photos in government ads - Alternative Media Forum


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Tuesday, 19 May 2015

Tamil Nadu seeks review of SC verdict banning politicians' photos in government ads

Chennai(web team): The Tamil Nadu government on Tuesday moved the Supreme Court for a review of guidelines issued last week on central government advertisements which restricted the use of political leaders photos in government advertisements, says The Hindu report.

The review petition said that the judgement is in opposition to federal structure based on grounds of “parity” between the Centre and States. It requested the SC to set aside the judgement saying that it gives an idea that judiciary is intruding into policy decision.

It also said that an ad about the state government's achievements should feature the Chief Minister. It also says that the SC overlooks earlier recommendation by a committee which had said that photos of CMs as well as other constitutional authorities.

The SC decision was given out on May 13. “The Supreme Court, while allowing two important public interest petitions filed by the Centre for Public Interest Litigation, has directed that government advertisements cannot be used to project political personalities or to derive any political advantage from the use of those advertisements which are issued on government and public funds,” senior advocate Prashant Bhushan told the media here.

“The court has in particular directed while accepting the recommendation and report of an expert committee headed by Madhavenon, that photographs of political personalities, including the chief ministers or ministers, cannot be used in any government advertisement from today. Only the photographs of the Prime Minister, President and Chief Justice can be used, and that too, if those functionaries themselves allow the use of the photographs in government advertisements,” he added.

The court has also asked government to constitute three-member committee to regulate advertisements.

Last year, a Supreme Court-appointed high-powered committee had recommended that names and pictures of political parties and their office bearers like presidents be not mentioned in government advertisements.

Holding that there had been 'misuse and abuse' of public money on such advertisements, the three-member committee had framed guidelines to regulate expenditure and contents of such advertisements paid out of tax payers' money.

The report, submitted to the apex court, had emphasised that only pictures and names of the President, the Prime Minister, Governor and Chief Ministers be published to "keep politics away from such ads".

With agency inputs: PTI/IANS

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