DD blacked out Tripura CM’s speech, says CPI(M)

first_imgThe CPI(M) said on Tuesday that Tripura Chief Minister Manik Sarkar’s Independence Day speech was blacked out by Doordarshan and All India Radio. “Doordarshan and All India Radio had recorded his speech… However, they subsequently informed him that the speech could not be carried as it stood and asked him to ‘reshape’ it,” the party said in a statement. The act was reminiscent of the “Emergency days,” it said. “In fact, it goes beyond as it seeks to gag the elected Chief minister of a State. The Centre is trampling upon the autonomy of Doordarshan/AIR and Prasar Bharati by such acts of censorship.” In a series of tweets, CPI(M) general secretary Sitaram Yechury said DD’s and AIR’s behaviour was against “cooperative federalism” that Prime Minister Narendra Modi talked about. “Doordarshan is not the private property of the BJP or the RSS. Its refusal to broadcast Tripura CM’s speech is undemocratic and illegal,” he said. The IANS news service quoted Mr. Sarkar as saying in his speech that India was yet to get economic independence. “India got independence 70 years ago. Indians got political freedom, but they have not got economic independence yet,” he said. He claimed that over 70 lakh workers were retrenched in one year and over 1.35 crore youths were jobless despite having professional degrees. “The main political parties are misguiding the people, especially the youth, for their narrow political interests. Divisions are being created among people in the name of religion and other issues,” he said. According to sources, this year, Doordarshan has shifted the speeches of all Chief Ministers from main DD channels to DD Bharti. A former Prasar Bharti official, speaking on condition of anonymity, said it was a break from the past. “There is no precedent of DD or AIR dictating a Chief Minister’s speech. Usually, it is telecast live on DD’s regional channels and a round-up is shown on DD National,” he said.last_img

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