The bench also expressed dissatisfaction about the new rules framed by the Union to regulate OTT platforms.
New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Friday, granted interim protection from arrest to Amazon Prime Video's India creative head Aparna Purohit in the case pertaining to the web series Tandav, saying she will not be arrested provided she cooperates with the investigation.
The Court order comes as a much needed relief for Purohit as the Uttar Pradesh Police has filed FIRs against her over the web series Tandav. The Amazon official has been accused of an inappropriate depiction of Uttar Pradesh police personnel and Hindu deities and an adverse portrayal of a character playing the prime minister in the web series.
A Bench of Justices Ashok Bhushan and Subhash Reddy also observed that the regulations in place to govern Over the Top (OTT) platforms are toothless and such content cannot be regulated without a law in place.
The Court was hearing the Purohit's appeal challenging the Allahabad High Court order which had denied her petition for an anticipatory bail in FIR filed in Greater Noida with regard to the Tandav web series.
Appearing on behalf of Purohit, senior advocate Mukul Rohtagi said the FIRs against his client were shocking as she is just an employee of Amazon and neither an actor or producer of 'Tandav' web series.
"These are all publicity seekers who have been filing cases all over India. Look at the FIR, look at what is happening. If you want to watch this web series, you have to pay to see this", Rohtagi said.
The bench also expressed dissatisfaction about the new rules framed by the Union to regulate OTT platforms. Justice Bhushan told the Solicitor General that the new rules "lack teeth" as there is no provision for prosecution or fine. Without a legislation, there cannot be effective control, Justice Bhushan remarked.
The Solicitor General submitted that the new rules were brought as a balance between "no-censorship and internal self-regulation". The SG agreed to produce a better draft of the rules for the consideration of the court.
The new OTT rules have no mechanism for screening of content on OTT platforms or taking appropriate action, the court said, as it impleaded the central government as a party to the case.
Last Updated Mar 5, 2021, 2:16 PM IST