New Delhi: The battle for airwaves is not over yet in Gujarat. The Union Information and Broadcasting Ministry is planning action against cable operators for telecasting Vande Gujarat, a programme promoting Chief Minister Narendra Modi, despite the Election Commission banning it.
The ministry’s warning of action comes at a time when several TV channels, including public broadcaster Doordarshan, continue to be blacked out in the state. The ministry believes Modi supporters are arm-twisting cable operators to continue showing Vande Gujarat and block channels considered unfavourable to the state government.
“They first blacked out some satellite channels and are now focussing on Vande Gujarat at the cost of other programmes,” said Information and Broadcasting Priya Ranjan Damunshi.
Dasmunshi has moved in fast to take effective steps: he was also quick to protest against the blackout of channels after Tehelka magazine on Friday broadcast a sting operation which allegedly showed Hindutva activists claiming that Modi had protected rioters in 2002
The BJP is not amused at the Centre’s threat of action against cable operators. “Dasmunshi is misusing Doordarshan,” said BJP leader Venkaiah Naidu.
|TAaj Tak, CNN-IBN and NDTV were blacked out for the third day on Saturday in Ahmedabad district as a fallout of the Tehelka sting on post-Godhra riots.|
|The administration claimed it's a violation of Clause 5 of Cable TV Network Regulation, which deals with broadcasting programmes, which could create communal tension.|
|But now District Collector Dhananjay Dwivedi, who placed restrictions on them, saus his instructions were misinterpreted.|
|The sting operation had showed Vishwa Hindu Parishad and the Bajrang Dal workers bragging about the support of the state administration and Narendra Modi as they went about killing Muslims in 2002.|
|One of them said Modi even thanked them after the carnage in Naroda Patiya and was impressed by their enthusiasm.|