HC Deb 05 March 1946 vol 420 c185
71. Mr. Peter Freeman

asked the Assistant Postmaster-General, as representing the Ministry of Information, whether he will state the principles which guide the policy of broadcasting, particularly in regard to controversial matters.

Mr. Burke

The B.B.C.'s policy is governed by the terms of its Charter and Licence. In its treatment of controversial matters it seeks to maintain an impartial and representative balance between various points of view.

Mr. Freeman

Might I ask that when the new Charter is granted to the B.B.C. an opportunity will be provided to discuss questions of a controversial nature relating to religion and medicine, which are prevented at the present time?

Mr. Burke

I cannot answer what may happen, but at the present time the B.B.C. does seek to keep—and I think generally does—an impartial and representative balance in its broadcasts.

Mr. Stokes

May I ask whether the Minister is aware that very bad discrimination was exercised against minority views for a long time during the war, and will he make quite sure now that they will have a full opportunity?

Mr. Burke

No, Sir, it would be impossible to reconcile the claims of "the two and seventy jarring sects."