Under attack over editing of Narendra Modi’s interview by Doordarshan, the government on Friday said it has maintained “arm’s length” with Prasar Bharati and steps suggested by an expert committee for further autonomy to it are under consideration.
Information and Broadcasting Minister Manish Tewari said the autonomy of the Prasar Bharati is guaranteed by an Act of Parliament and after he took over in October 2012, he had initiated steps to grant more autonomy to it by constituting the Sam Pitroda Committee.
“…the autonomy of Prasar Bharti is guaranteed by an Act of Parliament. Prasar Bharati is a board-run organisation and the I&B Ministry has an arm’s length relationship with Prasar Bharati,” Tewari said here.
The Union minister said he had suggested to the Committee that the relationship between the government and the Prasar Bharati should be on the lines of the relationship the Finance Ministry has with the CAG.
Tewari had also suggested that the budget of Prasar Bharati should be appropriated through the Consolidated Fund of India rather than being routed through the I and B Ministry.
“…the Sam Pitroda Committee submitted its report in February, 2014 and it is under consideration of the government. Pitroda is an Adviser to the PM on public information infrastructure and innovation.
“Therefore, all concerns which have been raised with regard to professional autonomy, with regard to the relationship which I and B ministry has with Prasar Bharati stand squarely answered,” Tewari said.
A controversy has erupted after some portions of Modi’s interview to Doordarshan were edited.