The Namo TV, which was launched on March 31, has been clarified as an advertising platform for the BJP, as per the Ministry of Information & Broadcasting (MIB). It has also been confirmed that Namo TV is not a licensed channel at all. The owner of this channel is Parag Shah, an IT professional and a political analyst.
Parag has earlier worked with Prime Minister Narendra Modi when Modi was the Chief Minister of Gujarat. The controversies on the channel rose to a great extent on how the Election Commission can launch a news channel from a particular political party just days before the 2019 Lok Sabha elections. Also, how could the DTH and the cable networks allow a channel, which doesn't have a licence?
In fact, the MIB website vividly quoted that no DTH platform can telecast a TV channel, which has not been registered by the Central government and it is against the Morale of Conduct. Opposition parties claim that the BJP has forced the DTH and cable networks to carry Namo TV as it is now a ruling party. Both the Congress and the Aam Aadmi Party have complained to the Election Commission against the channel.
"The BJP has actually taken advantage of a grey area in the regulation," says a senior journalist. He further said that TataSky has an icon called Showcase which displays many channels that are not licensed. Namo TV falls under that category. The channel's content is made available to the platforms not through satellite but through the fibre and aggravated by the operator.
Namo TV was launched earlier in 2012 and Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who was then the CM of Gujarat, forced his ministers and senior bureaucrats to give interviews on the various initiatives of his government. This happened during the state elections of Gujarat. When asked about the whole controversy, Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said, "Let the appropriate authorities answer. Let the Information and Broadcasting and Election Commission comment on it. You and I should not get into it."