Advertisements of condoms that are not sexually explicit and do not objectify women can continue to be aired on television at all hours, The Indian Express reported on Thursday, quoting a fresh order from the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting.
The ministry was clarifying on its advisory issued on December 11, which prohibited condom advertisements between 6 am and 10 pm, as they were “inappropriate” and “indecent” for children. On Wednesday, the Rajasthan High Court issued a notice to the ministry, asking for an explanation on the initial advisory.
“Advertisements that do not sexually objectify women can continue to play beyond curfew hours,” the ministry said in a memorandum on Thursday. “It is clarified that the said advisory only pertains to sexually explicit content being used to market certain condom brands which titillate the audience from a PR perspective.”
The ministry said that advertisements that aim to inform citizens about methods of safe sex, without objectifying women, are not banned.
In its December 11 order, the ministry had cited the Cable Network Television Rules, 1994, and said the decision was based on complaints made by viewers. In the new order, it cited another rule that prohibits women from being “portrayed in a manner that emphasises passive, submissive qualities and encourages them to play a subordinate secondary role in family and society”.