The role of government is that of an enabler in the media and entertainment sector: I&B ministry

Secretary of the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting, Amit Khare, stressed on Tuesday that the government’s role in the private media and entertainment sector is that of an enabler. Referring to the government’s recent decision to place digital audiovisual content broadcast on OTT platforms and digital news portals under the Ministry of I&B, he said this was done “to bring the content into a single place under the control of the Ministry of Information & Broadcasting” while keeping the platforms at another place under the supervision of the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology.

Speaking at a CII event, Khare said it was done to bring some sort of semblance so that online and offline content wouldn’t be treated differently. He added that the media and entertainment sector, just like the IT sector, has grown over the years as a private industry through the movies, broadcasting and OTT segments. “So the government’s role is not so much to regulate as to facilitate the growth of the industry,” Khare added.

Stating that the pandemic has opened up new avenues of growth for the sector, Khare said Indian gaming has huge export potential. With 2022 being India’s 75th year of independence, he urged the industry to help project the country’s soft power globally.

Meanwhile, in a message to the CII Big Picture Summit, Information and Broadcasting Minister Prakash Javadekar said that “Animation, Visual Effects, Games and Comics (AVGC) is a booming industry and our experts provide back-end support to the world’s best filmmakers”. He added that it was time for these professionals to start doing more “for our own films so that the use of animation and graphics in Indian films increases.”

He added that the government is setting up a center of excellence in cooperation with IIT Bombay where AVGC courses will be conducted. He added that the government will also undertake other initiatives to promote entrepreneurship and encourage start-ups in the sector.