Information and Broadcasting ministry proposed appointment of an IAS officer as the Member (Personnel) on Prasar Bharati, however, sources said the bid was dropped at its board meeting today. There was no official confirmation from the I&B ministry on the issue.
The I&B is the nodal ministry for the Prasar Bharati, which runs Doordarshan and All India Radio (AIR). According to the agenda papers for today's meeting, the ministry while contending that "an IAS officer could be an asset" for the public service broadcaster, "proposed that at least for one term in the interest of the organisation, the post of Member (Personnel) in Prasar Bharati be filled up by an IAS officer on deputation (through the ACC route), keeping the relevant recruitment provision in abeyance." However, sources privy to the meeting, said the proposal was dropped during the meeting. When contacted, I&B officials refused to comment. The position of the member (personnel) is currently lying vacant. Prasar Bharati Chairman A Surya Prakash and some other board members have opined that the appointment of an IAS officer would amount to contempt of Prasar Bharati Act passed by Parliament, the sources said. Besides, it would also be "denigrating" the office of the vice president who is required under the provision of the Act as chairman of the selection committee to make board-level appointments, they added. Another resolution that was dropped in the meeting was regarding the appointment of two senior journalists as head of Doordarshan News and Chief Editor of Prasar Bharati News Service (AIR), the sources said, adding that they were dropped on the grounds of high costs. Besides, some of the board members, including Prakash, also took objection to the "ministry's directive" regarding termination of contractual employees of the Prasar Bharati, they said. The board members expressed concern over the consequences of such a move on the functioning of various services of the broadcaster, they said. The Prasar Bharati Board comprises a chairman, an executive member (CEO), a Member (Finance), a Member (Personnel), six part-time members, a representative of the information and broadcasting ministry and the directors general of AIR and Doordarshan as ex-officio members.
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