| 28 Nov 2022
Parliamentary Standing Committee to review working of Prasar Bharati and implementation of Sam Pitroda Commttee recommendations

NEW DELHI: The Parliamentary Standing Committee has said it will review the working of Prasar Bharati 'in due course' particularly with regard to human resource and financial problems and has asked the pubcaster to apprise it of the action taken so far on the Sam Pitroda Committee recommendations.

The Parliamentary Standing Committee on Information Technology, which also examines issues relating to Information and Broadcasting Ministry, has noted in its recent report that it is aware that the Government is also undertaking a study following responses received from various stakeholders to the Sam Pitroda Committee report being placed on the website of the Ministry.

The Committee noted that Prasar Bharati has been suffering from financial problems as well as human resource related issues 'for the last so many years'.

The Sam Pitroda Committee had given its report in January 2014, the Standing Committee noted. Pitroda had submitted 26 recommendations in the areas of (i) Governance and Organisation, (ii) Funding, (iii) Human Resources, (iv) Content, (v) technology, (vi) Archiving, (vii) Social Media and (viii) Global Outreach.

The recommendations address issues of financial and administrative autonomy of Prasar Bharati to ensure that it is approximately positioned to execute its role as a genuine public broadcaster.

Interestingly, the Committee has suggested setting up of Prasar Bharati Connect (PBC) as the third arm of the public service broadcaster, independent of Doordarshan and All India Radio, to expand the social media. PBC should be mandated to manage the various Social Media initiatives of all the wings of Prasar Bharati. It also wants a Social Media Strategy of Prasar Bharati.

The Committee was set up in 28 January 2013 and had decided to set up eleven working groups on different issues and has come out with a report on eight main areas: governance and organisation, funding, human resource, content, technology, archiving, social media and global outreach.

The Committee suggests amending the 1990 Act where necessary so as to impart genuine and effective autonomy to the organisation.

Interestingly, the Committee wanted involvement of the private sector to expand the broadcasting market with a view to effectively utilise the infrastructure being built by Prasar Bharati to enable faster growth in the receiver ecosystem.