While the BJP-led NDA governent made a lot of efforts to name several major projects after Jan Sangh president Deen Dayal Upadhyay, a bio-epic on the leader on Doordarshan faces a future of uncertainity. following a policy shift.
Doordarshan plans to move from the current self-financing category where producers will invest money make serials/programmes which are then marketed by Doordarshan, to a regime where prime-time slots will be auctioned, fetching the broadcaster more revenues.
At stake, according to officials, are 19 prime-time and mid-prime time programmes, whose futures look uncertain if the old policy is junked mid-way.
The policy shift has invited sharp criticism from Prasar Bharati part-time Board member, and former media adviser in the Vajpayee government, Ashok Tandon. According to official sources, in a strongly worded letter to the Chairperson of the Prasar Bharati Corporation, Surya Prakash, Mr. Tandon ticked off CEO Jawhar Sircar for the policy.
The glitch, as Mr. Tandon points out in his letter, “is some programmes currently running on air have sought an extension; others, whose programmes have been approved to be aired on prime-time slots and those whose programmes have been approved but no time-slots have been given to them.”
Mr. Tandon had earlier raised questions on the policy in an article he wrote in the Asian Age a month ago. He had pointed out that “the shift in policy from commissioned programmes to slot sale by DD National, though on an experimental basis and that too only for prime time slots, is bound to trigger a debate among the producers who have put in their stakes in the commissioned programmes — either currently running on DD National or whose pilot projects have been approved and are in the pipeline.”
It is also learnt from sources, that some producers, led by Mr. Govil will make a presentation to the Prasar Bharati Board soon.