Kainthola takes over as executive director in LS TV

NEW DELHI: Indian Information Service officer Bhupendra Kainthola has taken over as the new executive director (programmes) of Lok Sabha Television, filling the vacancy created in January after the termination of services of Sudhir Tandon, without ascribing reason.

Kainthola has been posted to LS TV on deputation for three years. He is an IIS officer of the 1989 batch.

His last posting was as the deputy general manager (media) for the National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) for the past two years, but he has earlier worked for several years in Doordarshan News in the Mumbai and Delhi kendras. He also functioned in the Press Information Bureau for one year.

The post of the ED (P) has been held as an additional charge first by the executive producer Vartika Nanda-Sahai, and then by the executive director (marketing), Sunit Tandon, who is in the channel on deputation from the National Films Development Corporation.

Sudhir Tandon had retired as deputy director general in August 2005 from the charge of Director of the Delhi Kendra of Doordarshan before joining LS TV. He had received a termination order in late December ending his three-year contract (in just over a year), without assigning any reasons.

The LS TV was first conceived by the Lok Sabha Speaker Somnath Chatterjee and offered to Doordarshan.

However, the public broadcaster had demanded financial support for a minimum of 250 employees. Bhaskar Ghose - a former Director General of Doordarshan and also Secretary in the Information and Broadcasting Ministry - was then given the task of running the channel with a strength of less than 80 people.

He was appointed with the designation of media adivsor to the speaker and chief executive of the channel. LS TV was formally launched as a 24x7 channel from July 24, 2006 when the Monsoon session commenced. 

Commencing with the Budget session, the channel is now in charge of transmitting the signals to the Doordarshan tower from where these are uplinked. Earlier, this work was being handled by DD staff.

Furthermore, two more studios are coming up to augment the facilities, but sources in the channel told that there was no corresponding increase in staff strength which was now just over 100.

The channel still does not have any funds of its own and has to depend on the Audio Visual Unit of the Lok Sabha Secretariat for its expenses and infrastructure.

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