/ Government floats draft Bill to directly appoint DGs of DD, AIR; pulls it down

The Indian Express : Apr 09, 2019, 09:51 AM

On April 1, the I&B Ministry circulated the draft Bill to remove the provision to establish a recruitment board, and give powers to appoint the Directors General of Doordarshan and All India Radio directly to the Union government. The draft Prasar Bharati Amendment Bill, 2019 would in effect have the capacity to erode the national broadcaster’s autonomy, experts said. Prasar Bharati Act was passed in 1990.

On April 1, the I&B Ministry circulated the draft Bill to remove the provision to establish a recruitment board, and give powers to appoint the Directors General of Doordarshan and All India Radio directly to the Union government. The notification seeking public feedback on the draft Bill was removed from the ministry’s website in less than a week, and on April 8 the ministry issued another notice stating that “the matter has been kept in abeyance till further orders”.

The April 1 notice stated that the I&B Ministry “is in the process of amendment of Prasar Bharati (Broadcasting Corporation of India) Act, 1990” for which a “draft note” dated November 15, 2018 for the Union Cabinet was circulated for inter-ministerial consultation. It said that after receiving the inputs and comments from all concerned ministries and departments, the draft “The Prasar Bharati (Broadcasting Corporation of India) Amendment Bill, 2019” was prepared.