Television

Prasar Bharati financial rejig delayed

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NEW DELHI: The Indian government has said that the terms of a committee looking into the financial restructuring of pubcaster Prasar Bharati has been extended till year-end, which is likely to delay implementation of panels suggestions.

As the collation and compilation of the requisite data from various field units is likely to take more time, the term of the committee has been extended by three months up to 31 December, 2005 for submission of its report, information and broadcasting minister Priya Ranjan Dasmunsi told Rajya Sabha (Upper House) today.

A committee, headed by I&B secretary SK Arora, was appointed by the government on 30 March, 2005 for suggesting a viable capital and financial structure for the cash-strapped Prasar Bharati to facilitate the strengthening of its functioning.

The terms are from references of the panel which was to propose a viable capital and financial structure for Prasar Bharati, while taking into account the broadcasters role as a pubcaster and the need to maximise revenue-earning potential through commercial operations.

Meanwhile, the government also said that All India Radio proposes to increase FM radio coverage to about 50 per cent of the population during the Tenth Five-Year Plan.

The present FM coverage is about 33 per cent by population, Dasmunsi informed fellow parliamentarians, adding the whole, however, is covered through short wave signals.

Twelve satellite radio channels of AIR are available on Doordarshans DTH platform throughout the country except Andaman & Nicobar islands.

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