DD does well in war coverage

MUMBAI / NEW DELHI: Doordarshan has claimed an edge in covering the ongoing Iraq war by meticulously planning its news operation with a team of reporters detailed at various strategic points.

Even before the war broke out the national broadcaster had put in place its plan for live coverage, a DD release said on Friday.

It said that such preparation and war footage was unprecedented in its history.

"Doordarshan's efforts include an optimum use of the latest devices of technology in conveying the information quickly,'' the release said.

The correspondents are relying on videophones and satellite feeding of newsclips.

Pubcaster Doordarshan has outsourced its coverage to a private company, Saeed Naqvi's Third Eye, at the rate of Rs 500,000 per day. Reason: it was felt that insuring Prasar Bharati employees to cover the Gulf conflict may turn out to be cumbersome and expensive too, according to director-general of DD, SY Quraishi.

So, Third Eye is producing a daily half-hour show for DD, with one of the teams in Kuwait, and additionally the feeds sent through satellite can be used by DD for its various news bulletins. An example of the coverage: Sasi Kumar for Third Eye saying that the Indians in Kuwait have decided to bear out war fears along with their Kuwaiti friends, while a DD news team immediately afterwards interviewed Indians returning by the planeload from the Gulf.

Third Eye has been on the job for a week now and will continue for at least another 20 days, depending on the situation giving the Indian perspective of the US-led putsch.

Meanwhile, Doordarshan has acquired Beehive Systems Ltd's portable newsgathering solution vid'linkMOBILE. The system would be used for domestic and international newsgathering including coverage of the ongoing war in Iraq.

"Doordarshan selected vid'linkMOBILE for its superb performance against the competing products after thoroughly examining a host of newsgathering solutions available in the market," a company release says.

vid’linkMOBILE equips news stringers and television journalists on the field to easily capture, and quickly transmit superior video and scripts from anywhere in the world using dialup, internet, ISDN, or Inmarsat satellite phone terminals, the release says.

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