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I&B ministry asks other ministries, govt departments to effectively use public broadcasters

LiveMint logoLiveMint 03-08-2017 Harveen Ahluwalia

New Delhi: With a new minister in charge, the information and broadcasting (I&B) ministry has now written to central government ministries, public sector units and all other government departments, asking them to effectively use its media units, including public broadcaster Prasar Bharati and the Press Information Bureau (PIB), to inform the people about government programmes and achievements.

In a letter dated 28 July to all secretaries of the government, N.K. Sinha, the recently appointed secretary of the I&B ministry, said that the government should use “the wide spectrum of media units which have an impressive presence across the country” to meet its information dissemination, publicity and content creation needs.

“DD (Doordarshan) and AIR (All India Radio) are India’s premier national broadcasters and have been effectively discharging their responsibilities in the field of news, information and entertainment for decades. Their reach, depth, authenticity and clinical avoidance of sensationalism set them apart in the media market,” Sinha wrote in the letter. Prasar Bharati runs Doordarshan and All India Radio.

Sinha also said other media units of the I&B ministry like the Directorate of Advertising and Visual Publicity (DAVP), Publications Division (DPD) and Directorate of Field Publicity (DFP), can provide support to the government as well.

Union textile minister Smriti Zubin Irani was recently given the additional charge of information and broadcasting (I&B), after M. Venkaiah Naidu resigned from the post, following his nomination as the National Democratic Alliance’s (NDA) vice-presidential candidate.

Over the past two years, the NDA government has been leveraging the reach of the public broadcaster to popularise its schemes and achievements. Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s monthly radio address Mann Ki Baat on AIR is one the most successful programmes of the broadcaster and earned it Rs5.19 crore in ad revenue in 2016-17.

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