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Prasar Bharati ends PTI subscription, invites fresh proposals

Prasar Bharati ends PTI subscription, invites fresh proposals

Representational Image, source:

New Delhi : The national broadcaster, Prasar Bharati, has ended its subscription of news agency PTI and will invite proposals from other domestic news agencies.

The decision comes after a controversy broke when Prasar Bharati shot a letter to the agency threatening to end its " relationship" over an alleged ' anti-national" reportage by PTI in June this year.

Prasar Bharati is one of the biggest subscribers of India's largest news agency, paying PTI over Rs 6.75 crore annually, IANS reported quoting sources.

Press Trust of India, a non-profit trust, is run by a Board comprising owners and proprietors of key newspaper groups.

Prasar Bharati decided to end its "current ad-hoc pro-rata arrangement for the PTI subscription" four months after alleging the agency's coverage of India-China clash was unfair and not in sync with national interest.A letter regarding this has been sent to both PTI and UNI.

Prasar Bharati will initiate a process of inviting fresh proposals from all the news agencies including PTI and UNI, report say.

PTI had carried an interview with Chinese Ambassador Sun Weidong, where he blamed India for the India-China violent standoff that saw 20 Indian bravehearts getting martyred.

Sources said a "strong letter" was sent to PTI just ahead of its Board meeting in June where the public broadcaster expressed "deep displeasure on anti-national reporting by PTI". The public broadcaster had communicated that the PTI's editorial stance makes it untenable to "continue the relationship".

Government sources claim that the broadcaster had been "supporting PTI with huge financial fees" which often ran into several crore. This ad-hoc pro-rata arrangement has been going on for decades, claimed the source. However, it insisted that PTI has been "rigid" on review of the same since 2016-17.

This report from IANS has been edited

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