Irked with DD, North-East TV producers to submit memo to I&B minister

NEW DELHI: The producers of TV programmes from the Northeast (comprising eight states of the country) have taken up cudgels against alleged malpractices prevailing in India's pubcaster Doordarshan and its regional centre.

In a memorandum, which is to be submitted to the information and broadcasting minister Jaipal Reddy tomorrow, the NE Producers Association has alleged that sanctioned funds for commissioned and royalty-based programmes have not been released by Prasar Bharati.

Prasar Bharati looks after the functioning of DD and its sibling All India Radio.

As an example, the association has said that for works done under the commissioned category about 50 per cent of the producers of the region are yet to get their payments for completed programmes.

In what could be a damaging allegation, the association has said that the officially allocated money has not been released since financial year 2001-02 by DD's Guwahati regional centre for programmes. The money was to be allotted under the commissioned and royalty categories for a 24-hour satellite channel, meant for the region.

Pointing out that the withheld accumulated amount- that adds up to Rs 1421 million- the yet-to-be-submitted memo states, "Surprisingly not a single rupee was released against this allocation (and) as a result, the channel has to repeat programmes, and collect old programmes from other kendras (centres) of this region."

Amongst some other demands, the NE producers Association has said that money allocated for programmes to be outsourced should be released by October. They also insisted that various regional centres of DD of the region should be upgraded and an apathetic attitude of National Film and Development Corporation towards filmmakers from N-E region should be done away with.

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