Ad agencies owe DD Rs 24 crore, Rs 53.7 crore recovered by arbitration

NEW DELHI: Noting that there were outstanding dues of approximately Rs 6.40 crore for 2013-14 and Rs 17.76 crore for the year 2014-15 in respect of various Doordarshan Kendras, a Parliamentary Committee has asked the Information and Broadcasting ministry and Prasar Bharati that the process of recovery of dues should be expedited.

The Parliamentary Standing Committee for Information Technology which goes into issues relating to I and B also noted that the final figures of outstanding amount due for the year 2015-16 were still being worked out and, as such, there could be some outstanding dues for that year also.

At the outset, the Committee said the issue of outstanding dues of the Doordarshan Kendras has been lingering for quite some time and there was a huge pendency of outstanding dues. However, the ministry said there was no outstanding amount in respect of All India Radio stations.

Arbitrators had passed fifteen awards in favour of Prasar Bharati and approximately Rs 53.71 crore had been recovered by taking recourse to provisions of the Arbitration and Conciliation Act 1996 (including all amendments till 2015) by filing its claims against such defaulting advertising agencies for the recovery of outstanding dues.

The Committee was told Prasar Bharati is making efforts to recover the outstanding dues by continuously pursuing the defaulters to make payment and request reminders are sent, and in case of delay, Doordarshan charges interest @ 14.5 % from the defaulting agencies. Bank Guarantees of the defaulting agencies are encashed as per terms and conditions of the agreement.

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