Come 30 June and the very eventful term of ministry of Information
& broadcasting (I&B) secretary Uday Kumar Varma is
slated to come to an end.
has already reported on the possible candidates who are being
spoken about in political circles as his replacement. (See:
will replace I&B secretary Uday Kumar Varma?)
secretary Uday Kumar Varma
on his part has earned a remarkable name for himself in the
industry for his commendable accomplishments in the past couple
of years since he took over the secretary's post in October
2011 from Raghu Menon who retired in end September of that
all, it was Varma who kick-started the process of digitisation
and gave it the required momentum. It is Varma's perseverance
that has made DAS a success so far. This dynamic I&B secretary
has set precedents for his successors like very few before.
Unlike many of his predecessors, Varma also didn't shy away
from cracking down on content related issues on news and entertainment
Rao: NBA President Narayan Rao applauds Verma for a
successful DAS in a country like ours
spoke to industry head honchos to get their views on what
they have to say about Varma's journey in the ministry. And
very rightly, the industry congratulated him for his numerous
was not an easy task, especially in a vast country like India.
Yet, Varma spearheaded this revolutionary change and pushed
it in his capacity. NDTV vice chairperson and NBA president
Narayan Rao acknowledges this fact when he says: "He
has been excellent from the industry's perspective.
Azhar: DEN network CEO MG Azhar heartily congratulates
has been very understanding and also a great force behind
the entire digitisation process. The fact that two phases
have been successful in a country like India is a very stupendous
task and a great achievement in itself. We are proud of him."
Networks- COO-MG Azhar minces no words while congratulating
Varma, he says: "I would like to congratulate him for
a very good term. It is absolutely an unprecedented achievement
the way he and his team has rallied around and made DAS a
television and advertising world has been going through a
rough time with the whole TV rating fiasco. Madison Media
COO Karthik Lakshminarayan states: "I want to congratulate
him on completing his tenure successfully. Also, I would like
to appreciate the way he pulled off all the activities, especially
at a time when the media industry has been going through a
crisis like TAM or irregular ratings."
Laxminarayan: Madison Media COO Laxminarayan talks
about Varma's efforts for the industry at a time of
the TAM crisis
Sky CEO Harit Nagpal reminisces: "He will be remembered
for sowing the seeds of digitisation and carrying
multiple stakeholders like broadcasters, MSOs, LCOs and state
governments together through phases I and II."
Nagpal: Tata Sky CEO Harit Nagpal talks about Varma's
co-operation with MSOs and LCOs
process of digitisation has set up a win-win situation for
both the advertising and broadcasting industry and Varma's
attempts on this front have rightfully won him laurels. Seconding
this, AAAI president, Leo Burnett India south Asia chairman
and CEO Arvind Sharma says: "It was a real pleasure dealing
with him and yes he has done very well. In his term as a secretary,
digitisation is a big win for broadcasters as well as for
about Varma's support to the film industry, PVR CEO Uday Singh
says: "He has been a champion of digitisation and has
been very good for the media and entertainment industry. We
brought in the 100th year of Indian cinema and he has worked
tremendously on that front as well. He has always been receptive
to all our ideas as well."
Mansukhani: InCablenet cheif Ravi Mansukhani talks about
the DAS journey along with Varma
adding a different perspective, InCablenet MD and CEO Ravi
Mansukhani asserts: "Well he is leaving in mid-digitisation.
But he did pretty well irrespective to all the barriers coming
in his way. We are in Phase II and now looking forward to
phase III. In 2003 and again in 2007, the whole ecosystem
tried to go ahead with digitisation but it didn't work out.
But this time, when we started again with digitisation, I&B
led by its secretary stuck to the process. Hence, in-spite
of several hurdles and delays, digitisation has progressed
and has almost been completed in Mumbai, Delhi and Kolkata.
And a large part of that credit should go to his sheer determination."
his successor, it will definitely be a tough job to take his
legacy forward and complete what Varma so single-mindedly