Venkaiah Naidu calls for Rajya Sabha TV audit
New Delhi: A month after assuming office, vice president M. Venkaiah Naidu has called for a comprehensive performance and expenditure audit of television channel Rajya Sabha TV.
Founded in 2008, Rajya Sabha TV is owned and operated by Rajya Sabha and covers the proceedings of the upper house of Parliament.
Naidu, who is also chairman of Rajya Sabha, reviewed the functioning of the channel and also suggested a system for feedback and evaluation of content aired, according to a senior official who did not want to be named.
Naidu, who was formerly information and broadcasting (I&B) minister, replaced Hamid Ansari as India’s vice president on 11 August.
“Shri Naidu said keeping in view the USP (the unique selling point) of the channel, efforts need to be made to expand Rajya Sabha TV’s reach with a clear plan of action,” the official said, adding that the channel has also been asked to explore a content-sharing arrangement with the public broadcaster Prasar Bharati.
Prasar Bharati runs Doordarshan and All India Radio.
“Naidu has also raised queries regarding the original mandate of the channel, present content mix, reach of the channel, utilization of manpower and other resources, expenditure under various heads and the scope for rationalization,” the official added.
Over the years, Rajya Sabha TV has drawn flak from the government for overspending public money and not giving appropriate publicity to Bharatiya Janata Party-led National Democratic Alliance (NDA) government’s events and schemes.
The Rajya Sabha secretariat in August appointed Prasar Bharati chief executive Shashi Shekhar Vempati as chief of Rajya Sabha TV. Vempati replaced Gurdeep Singh Sappal who resigned in July.
Vempati could not be reached for comment.
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