New Delhi: The Group of Ministers on Prasar
Bharti met here today and discussed issues relating to
recruitment and status of officers on duty in the
The GoM is headed by Union Home Minister P Chidamabaram.
Urban Development Minister Jaipal Reddy, Information and
Broadcasting Minister Ambika Soni and Law Minister Veerappa
Moily are the other members.
The Group of Ministers was reconstituted in February this
year after the previous GoM had ceased to exist at the end of
the tenure of UPA-I.
It met for the first time in April 13 when it cleared the
long-pending issue of financial restructuring of the public
The GoM had been constituted to deal with issues of
recruitment and status of officers on deputation in the Prasar
Fiftyone television news correspondents were appointed on
contract by Doordarshan in 1988. Their promotion was, however,
opposed by IIS officers. The Central Administrative Tribunal
in 2000 directed that they be provided all benefits of the
service but this order has been challenged in the Andhra
Pradesh High Court. The matter is sub-judice.
Information and Broadcasting Minister Ambika Soni has
said that the ministry was trying to resolve the issue before
the end of current fiscal.
The primary purpose of the separate GoM for Prasar
Bharati had arisen about a decade ago to work as a watchdog on
the financial aspects of the public broadcaster, which at that
time was totally dependent on government funding.
The GoM has also made several recommendations over the
years with regard to streamlining the procedure for selection
of programmes and ensuring greater transparency in the
functioning of the public broadcaster.
Recently, Soni had reiterated that Prasar Bharati should
ensure transparency in its dealings, particularly as far as
evaluation committees for programmes are concerned.
Apart from the GoM, the functioning of Prasar Bharati is
also overseen by the standing committee of MPs on Information
Technology and the consultative committee of MPs attached to