New Zealand broadcaster fined for mockery of Indian minister

2011-06-14 07:09

Wellington – Television New Zealand was fined 3 000 New Zealand dollars (R16 620) after a controversial presenter mocked the chief minister of Delhi.

Paul Henry’s remarks over Sheila Dikshit in October were made in the run up to the Delhi Commonwealth Games, which was dominated by headlines on corruption and inefficiency.

The Broadcasting Standards Authority quoted Henry as saying during the item, “Also the dip shit woman, god what’s her name (hysterical laughter), D*ck Sh*t, is it D*ck Sh*t?”

Henry also said her name was appropriate “because she’s Indian, so she would be (deep) in sh*t, wouldn’t she, do you know what I mean, walking along the street”.

The authority said Paul Henry’s comments were “not only derogatory but entirely dissonant with common decency and a clear breach of the discrimination and denigration standard”.

Fairfax Media reported that the Paul Henry dismissed the authority’s decision as “insignificant rulings made by insignificant people for insignificant reasons”.

Henry has since resigned from Television New Zealand after a series of controversial comments, including questioning whether New Zealand’s Governor-General Sir Anand Satyanand was a New Zealander as he is of Indian descent.

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