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Mrinal Pande is Prasar Bharti chairperson

Signaling an overhaul of the controversial Prasar Bharti ahead of the Commonwealth Games,the UPA government on Friday approved famous...

Written by Amitav Ranjan | New Delhi |
January 23, 2010 3:38:34 am

Signaling an overhaul of the controversial Prasar Bharti ahead of the Commonwealth Games,the UPA government on Friday approved famous journalist and author Mrinal Pande’s name as its new chairperson.

Demonstrating the need for ushering professionalism,the Prime Minister also appointed noted filmmakers Shyam Benegal and Muzaffar Ali as well as journalist Suman Dubey as members of the board that overlooks the functioning of state-run All India Radio and Doordarshan.

The move is being seen as an effort to gradually ease out Prasar Bharti CEO B S Lalli who has been presiding over the body until a new chairman was appointed after the previous chairman Arun Bhatnagar’s resignation was accepted last month. Though Bhatnagar submitted his resignation last May,the government had asked him to stay on for some time. In December,it was finally accepted.

CEO Lalli,an IAS officer,was caught in a controversy over allegations of financial irregularities levelled by the members of his Board. The other two members of the Prasar Bharti board — S K Bisaria and Sunil Dang — have also left following completion of their six-year term.

Bhatnagar,also an IAS officer,considered close to the Congress party was appointed to replace M V Kamath,an NDA appointee. The Congress had called Kamath’s appointment “one more blatant attempt by the National Democratic Alliance government to influence DD and AIR”.

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