In a bid to regularize, e-papers and digital news, these platform will now come under the gambit of the Information and Broadcasting ministry’s governance. MIB has put forward a draft Registration of Press and Periodicals Bill 2019 to replace the existing Press and Registration of Books (PRB) Act, 1867, and one of the key highlights of the proposal is bringing digital news under its umbrella.
The draft bill also proposes to have a simple system of registration of e-papers.
The Bill proposes to remove the existing provisions relating to registration of books and matters connected thereto. It also talks about doing away with the existing procedure of furnishing of declaration by publishers/ printers before the District Magistrate and its subsequent authentication.
According to the draft bill, the “process of title and registration of periodicals”, including newspapers, is proposed to be effected centrally by the Press Registrar General as a simultaneous mechanism.
It further says that the change will also enable the Central and State Governments to frame appropriate rules or regulations to regulate the criteria and conditions for issuing government advertisements in newspapers, accreditation of newspapers and such other facilities for newspapers.