The Sikh Channel has been found in breach over a programme which it had aired – a viewer complaining that the broadcast was inciting hatred against Hindus.
The 90-minute programme titled ‘Your Opinions’ was broadcast in April included the presenter asking worshippers for their views on the news announced that day in India that Sajjan Kumar, a senior member of the Congress Party had been acquitted of alleged crimes committed during anti-Sikh riots in November 1984.
The Sikh Channel said that it understood: “the absolute importance of due impartiality. However, it stated its view that this should not prohibit any discussion on autonomy”
The broadcaster also said that: “Sikh Channel has no agenda against any Government, political party or person but has a policy of covering all subjects of importance to the Sikh community”.
Media regulator concluded: “In reaching our decision, we took into account the various changes to its compliance that the Licensee had put in place, including the employment of a ;further full time compliance officer’. However, given the above, Ofcom considered the programme breached Rule 5.5 of the Code.”
Rule 5.5: “Due impartiality on matters of political or industrial controversy and matters relating to current public policy must be preserved on the part of any person providing a service (listed above). This may be achieved within a programme or over a series of programmes taken as a whole.”