No sole sport rights to Doordarshan: Govt

NEW DELHI: The Indian government today clarified that it was not working towards a mechanism to give pubcaster Doordarshan the sole rights to sporting events in the country.

The government, however, has issued an order on 5 April 2006 that mandates live feeds of a number of specified sporting events of national importance held in India or abroad to be shared with Prasar Bharati by private broadcasters.

In case of cricket events, these shall include all matches featuring India and the finals and semi finals of international events, information and broadcasting minister Priya Ranjan Dasmunsi informed Lok Sabha (Lower House of Parliament) today.

He also said that the government has no proposal to set up a regulatory authority to monitor and regulate earnings through telecasting of sporting events.

However, the government is contemplating establishment of an autonomous authority to regulate the broadcasting sector.

The minister, however, did not give any time frame to bring about legislation to regulate the broadcasting sector. Earlier, Dasmunsi had said that his ministry was working towards introducing a Broadcasting Bill in Parliament in the monsoon session, which started on24 July.

Severe criticism of a draft Bill, doing the rounds of various ministries for feedback on it, has prompted the I&B ministry for the moment from not listing it on the agenda of Parliament’s present session that will close on 30 August.

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