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  • Bimal Julka is new I&B secretary

    Submitted by ITV Production on Jun 29
    indiantelevision.com Team

    MUMBAI: His name was nowhere amongst those being talked about in the corridors of power as information & broadcasting (I&B) ministry secretary Uday Kumar Varma?s successor even as recently as a week or so ago. Hence the announcement of Bimal Julka by the appointments committee of the cabinet as the new I&B secretary came as a surprise to many.

    Julka - an IAS officer from the 1979 batch of the Madhya Pradesh cadre - is currently special secretary and financial advisor in the external affairs ministry and he takes over from Varma who is slated to retire tomorrow

    A post-graduate in psychology Julka has had an exposure to various ministries right from textiles to defence to finance. His longest stint was as joint secretary in the ministry of defence from 2003 to 2009. He was promoted to special secretary and financial adviser in the ministry of external affairs in January of this year.

    Julka will have his hands full during his term. India?s cable TV ecosystem is going through its biggest revamp with the government?s digitization mandate being rolled out in about 44 towns and cities, despite severe resistance from local cable operators who prefer to maintain the status quo.

    Over the next two years, digital addressable systems are to be driven deeper into smaller towns and villages, and that?s where will lie Julka?s biggest challenge.

    Additionally, next year is election year and the I&B ministry will have to be in top gear to service the needs of the government.

    This apart, the ministry will have to decide on what role - if any ? it will play in the current TV ratings crisis which has been hogging media headlines over the past month or so.

    Bimal Julka
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