Rajya Sabha passes Press and Registration of Periodicals Bill


Rajya Sabha on Thursday passed a bill that replaces the existing legislation which governs the registration of print and publishing industry in the country.
The Press and Registration of Periodicals Bill, 2023 was passed by a voice vote.
Replying to the discussion on the bill, Information and Broadcasting Minister Anurag Thakur said this will lead to ease of doing business for media and publishing companies, simplify the process of registration and decriminalise several colonial-era penal provisions. He observed that the bill traverses the journey from bureaucratic burden to ease of doing business. “Those involved in terrorist activities or unlawful activities against the state will not be granted permission to start a paper or periodical,” he said.
The bill replaces the existing Press and Registration of Books (PRB) Act, 1867. The Union Cabinet last month approved the PRP Bill that seeks to simplify the registration process for periodicals and do away with the provision for prosecution and imprisonment of publishers and simplify the registration process for periodicals.
The new law also seeks to do away with two provisions that required the publishers and printers to file a declaration before the district magistrate.