Ofcom fines Noor TV £75k for offensive content

Raj Baddhan

Senior Editor


Noor TV in trouble

UK media regulator, Ofcom has imposed a fine of £75,000 on Noor TV’s licence holder Mohiuddin Digital Television Limited.

Ofcom said it failed to provide adequate protection for viewers, after it aired potentially offensive and harmful content on the channel on 17th November 2015.

The Breach Decision noted that the Programme, broadcast in Urdu, included recordings of a religious festival commemorating the death anniversary of two Sufi saints. During this celebration a succession of speakers gave a series of sermons, homilies and poetic verses. One of the speakers, Allama Mufti Muhammad Saeed Sialvi Sahib (“Allama Sialvi”), recounted a parable in which he stated that the Prophet Muhammed had given a general command to kill all Jewish people. He stated that upon hearing this command one Muslim follower had immediately killed a Jewish trader with whom he had long standing business relations. Allama Sialvi held this to be an example of the devotion and obedience of a disciple to the Prophet Muhammed and on several occasions appeared to condone the killing of a Jewish trader.

Under Ofcom’s Broadcasting Code, all licensees must apply generally-accepted standards to the content on service, so that audiences are adequately protected from offensive and harmful material. After an investigation, Ofcom found that comments made by a speaker could have resulted in serious risk of harm and caused unjustified offence to audiences.

Ofcom concluded this was a serious breach of the Broadcasting Code which warranted a statutory sanction.