AIR employee suicide drama comes to an end

NEW DELHI: Innovative ways of protests are not new in India and with the pressure of work increasing in the sector of media suicide threats too are not uncommon.

DISGRUNTLED DESCENT: Bhaskar Bora climbs down from the AIR tower at Akashwani Bhavan in New Delhi.

A high drama was witnessed at Delhi’s busy Parliament Street yesterday as a casual employee of India’s radio pubcaster, All India Radio, climbed a huge tower at the Akashwani Bhavan and threatened to jump down if his demands were not met.

Bhaskar Bora, a newsreader, who was demanding regularisation of service, climbed the tower around 10:30 am, a PTI report, quoting the local police, said. However, onlookers said the dejected employee climbed down late Wednesday evening.

Bhaskar threw some pamphlets from the tall tower, according to the wire service report. The police collected the pamphlets that, reportedly, said the information and broadcasting minister along with the CEO of Prasar Bharati, which oversees the functioning of AIR and Doordarshan, should come and talk to him.

The traffic on the busy Parliament Street was thrown out of gear with the posse of policemen regulating the movement of vehicles. A large number of fire brigade personnel also stood by for any emergency. A huge snorkel was also pressed into service to bring Bhaskar down.

Meanwhile, in the Lower House of Indian Parliament information and broadcasting minister Ravi Shankar Prasad stated that the government proposes to computerise the Akashwani Kendras to enable them to perform better.

The proposed expenses likely to be incurred on each of the kendras/offices of All India Radio (AIR) would be Rs 7 million for zonal office, Rs 300,000 for big stations and Rs 150,000 lakh for smaller stations, Prasad said in Lok Sabha, adding the proposal is expected to be implemented within a year.

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