NEW DELHI – Indian news channel NDTV will be taken off air for 24 hours as a penalty for its coverage of an attack on an air force base.
The ministry of information and broadcasting said NDTV Hindi divulged “strategically-sensitive details” while covering the attack on the Pathankot air force base in January, in which seven Indian soldiers and six militants were killed.
NDTV denied the accusation, saying its coverage was “particularly balanced”.
The ministry said that the channel would be taken off air on 9 November for 24 hours for disclosing information on ammunition and the locations of military planes.
NDTV said it was looking at “all possible options” in response to the “extraordinary order”. The channel has also received support from the Editors Guild of India, an organisation of top editors which condemned the “unprecedented decision”.
West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee criticised the Bharatiya Janata Party-led central government for putting a one-day ban on the news channel, saying it showed that an “emergency-like situation” prevailed in the country.