(1) The Ministry shall constitute an Inter-Departmental Committee, called the Committee, consisting of representatives from the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting, Ministry of Women and Child Development, Ministry of Law and Justice, Ministry of Home Affairs, Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology, Ministry of External Affairs, Ministry of Defence, and such other Ministries and Organisations, including domain experts, that it may decide to include in the Committee:
Provided that the Authorised Officer designated under sub-rule (2) of rule 13 shall be the Chairperson of such Committee.
(2) The Committee shall meet periodically and hear the following complaints regarding violation or contravention of the Code of Ethics by the entities referred to in Rule 8:
(a) arising out of the grievances in respect of the decisions taken at the Level I or II, including the cases where no such decision is taken within the time specified in the grievance redressal mechanism; or
(b) referred to it by the Ministry.
(3) Any complaint referred to the Committee, whether arising out of the grievances or referred to it by the Ministry, shall be in writing and may be sent either by mail or fax or by e-mail signed with electronic signature of the authorised representative of the entity referring the grievance, and the Committee shall ensure that such reference is assigned a number which is recorded along with the date and time of its receipt.
(4) The Ministry shall make all reasonable efforts to identify the entity referred to in Rule 8 which has created, published or hosted the content or part thereof, and where it is able to identify such entity, it shall issue a duly signed notice to such entity to appear and submit their reply and clarifications, if any, before the Committee.
(5) In the hearing, the Committee shall examine complaints or grievances, and may either accept or allow such complaint or grievance, and make the following recommendations to the Ministry,
(a) warning, censuring, admonishing or reprimanding such entity; or
(b) requiring an apology by such entity; or
(c) requiring such entity to include a warning card or a disclaimer; or
(d) in case of online curated content, direct a publisher to—
(i) reclassify ratings of relevant content; or
(ii) edit synopsis of relevant content; or
(iii) make appropriate modification in the content descriptor, age classification and parental or access control;
(e) delete or modify content for preventing incitement to the commission of a cognisable offence relating to public order;
(f) in case of content where the Committee is satisfied that there is a need for taking action in relation to the reasons enumerated in sub-section (1) of section 69A of the Act, it may
recommend such action.
(6) The Ministry may, after taking into consideration the recommendations of the Committee, issue appropriate orders and directions for compliance by the publisher:
Provided that no such order shall be issued without the approval of the Secretary, Ministry of Information and Broadcasting, Government of India (hereinafter referred to as the “Secretary, Ministry of Information and Broadcasting”).
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