‘Necessary For Psychological Health’ : Plea In SC For Free Services From TV Channels, Streaming Apps & Mobile Cos During Lockdown

first_imgTop Stories’Necessary For Psychological Health’ : Plea In SC For Free Services From TV Channels, Streaming Apps & Mobile Cos During Lockdown Radhika Roy16 April 2020 5:13 AMShare This – xA Petition has been filed before the Supreme Court seeking directions to entities such as Reliance, Bharti Airtel, TataSky, Netflix, Vodafone, Amazon Retail and others, to provide free and uninterrupted services of calling, data usages, satellite TV usages and other allied services during the period of lockdown imposed to curb spread of COVID-19 pandemic. The petition, filed…Your free access to Live Law has expiredTo read the article, get a premium account.Your Subscription Supports Independent JournalismSubscription starts from ₹ 599+GST (For 6 Months)View PlansPremium account gives you:Unlimited access to Live Law Archives, Weekly/Monthly Digest, Exclusive Notifications, Comments.Reading experience of Ad Free Version, Petition Copies, Judgement/Order Copies.Subscribe NowAlready a subscriber?LoginA Petition has been filed before the Supreme Court seeking directions to entities such as Reliance, Bharti Airtel, TataSky, Netflix, Vodafone, Amazon Retail and others, to provide free and uninterrupted services of calling, data usages, satellite TV usages and other allied services during the period of lockdown imposed to curb spread of COVID-19 pandemic. The petition, filed by Advocate Manohar Pratap, states that the directions are necessary as there is a high probability that the Respondents will not provide any free services of communication and entertainment to the citizens, which could be detrimental to their life and liberty as enumerated under Article 21 of the Constitution of India. “It will further result in injury to the psychological health of the public at large thereby resulting in gross violation of Right to Life guaranteed under Article 21 of the Constitution of India”. The plea highlights the fact that humans are social and emotional being who require social interactions, various modes of entertainment to keep their psychological well-being in good form. The Petitioner elucidates a situation wherein persons who are stranded alone without their families or in quarantine (home/govt. provided facility) require constant support of near and dear ones, and in order to achieve the same, constant communication is needed which can only take place via digital means. Therefore, “it is imperative on the parts of Govt. of India to provide all facilities of unlimited calling (audio/video) free to all citizens of the country immediately”. “…apart from the social interactions by way of talking, video calling, other modes of digital entertainment like watching TV channels on satellite TVs (DTH), watching various shows on streaming websites can be helpful in lowering the psychological stress caused by confinement during lockdown”. The plea also refers to reports that 3 persons have committed suicide in quarantine due to fear of Coronavirus, which is a direct result of psychological pressure. Additionally, the extension of the lockdown necessitates the Respondents to offer services in a free and unlimited manner to satisfy the basic human need of social interaction and entertainment. “Seamless, unlimited free audio and video communication will allow the stranded person away from their family to contact them which will help them to deal with present emergent situation in a better manner psychologically”. Additionally, due to people being confined to quarantine and lack of resources to get their phones charged, the petition prays for all mobile service providers to provide unlimited free calling and data services, irrespective of the recharge plans. Therefore, the Central Government and its authorities have been sought to direct Mobile Service Providers and DTH/Satellite TV Service Providers to invoke relevant terms of agreement of licenses granted to them for providing completely free and unlimited viewing facility of their channels and other contents to their subscribers during the lockdown period. Next Storylast_img read more