News In Brief

LPTV Meet at Jhunjhunu: One day convention of the Unit Secretaries and representatives from the LPTVs situated in Rajasthan-Haryana Border areas was organized at Shalimar Hotel, Jhunjhunu on 16-03-2005. Convention was inaugurated by lighting a ceremonial lamp by Sh Anilkumar S. (Gen Sec). Addressing the gathering, Sh. Anilkumar S. called upon the members to be prepared for a united movement, to protect the interest of the employees of AIR and Doordarshan especially in the alarming financial condition of Prasar Bharati which may not be in a position to guarantee salary and pension in the prevailing situation. Sh. Manoj Kumar Gupta (JS-EA/SEA), Sh.J. P. Gupta (SS-Raj), Sh. Pratap Singh (ASE-AIR Bikaner) and Sh. B.S. Meena (Ex-President)also addressed the gathering and took note of the grievances of members. About 50 members from 23 LPTs under various DDMCs participated in the convention. It was pointed out that 11 LPTs in Rajasthan are under the plan of Automation. On the other hand in view of frequent failures in unmanned LPT at Kajuwala, one person has been kept there on tour. Demands for the enhancement of the limit of OTA, time scale promotions, mergers of some cadres, simplification of GPF accounts, declaration of Rajgarh, Taranagar and Jhunjhunu as difficult stations, allotment of vacant quarters of AIR Churu to the staff of LPT Churu etc were raised by members. Poor condition of LPT buildings at Taranagar and Kotputli, Harassment by land lords at LPT Nawalgarh and LPT Chirwa, are some other issues highlighted by the representatives from these stations. Issues of RR and Service conditions were also discussed. Local media gave wide coverage to the convention. Dedicated efforts put in by Sh. Basant Lal Meena (DDK Jaipur), Sh. S.P. Chaudhary (LPT Jhunjhunu) and their team deserves full appreciation for organising the convention.

Departmental Competitive Examinations:
.For Sr. Tech to EA in North Zone will be held on 16-07-2005 at Delhi for 7 vacancies (no of posts are tentative and may change). It is to be noted that due to court stay on examination in North Zone, the exam could not be held earlier in the zone together with other zones. Now that the court stay has been vacated hence the exam is being held now.

Constitution of a Committee for Prasar Bharati: Ministry of I&B has constituted a committee on 30-03-2005 to suggest a viable capital and financial structure for Prasar Bharati to strengthen the functioning of Prasar Bharati. The committee would comprise the following;
1 Secretary (I&B) Chairman
2 Addl. Secretary Member
3 Addl. Sec&FA (I&B) Member
4 CEO, Prasar Bharati Member
5 Member (Finance), Prasar Bharati Member
6 Jt-Sec (Broadcasting) Member-Convenor
7 Advisor (C&I), Planning Commission Member
8 Jt. Sec (Exp), Min of Finance Member
9 DG (Doordarshan) Member
10 DG (AIR) Member

The terms of reference of the Committee will, inter alia, include the following.
a. The Committee shall propose a viable capital and financial structure for Prasar Bharati.
b. While proposing such a model the committee shall take into account the role of Prasar Bharati as a public sector broadcaster and the need to maximize its revenue earning potential through commercial operations.
c. The committee may invite experts from within and outside the Government to participate in its deliberations and contribute towards finalizing its recommendations.

The members of the committee would participate and contribute to the afore-mentioned objectives on a voluntary basis. In the case of experts drawn from outside, they will be paid TA/DA or other incidental expenses, which would be determined by the Government separately. The committee will submit its report within a period of three months.

E-in-C (AIR) visits Lucknow: On 12th March, E-in-C (AIR) Sh. K.M. Paul visited AIR Lucknow and meeting was held with ARTEE representatives. Following points were discussed;
.Safety and Security of HPT: HPT being situated in the midst of a Jungle dangerous reptiles like Cobra, Viper, Python, Scorpios have registered their presence in HPT on many occasions. Carbolic acid is always in short supply. Restroom are full of insects like Mosquitoes, Lizerds, Mongoose etc. HPT has acute shortage of emergency lights. Even torches are without cells. The HT switch gears have long outlived their useful lives and require immediate replacement.
.HPT is facing acute shortage of consumable items which are essential to carry out smooth routine maintenance.
.HPT staff feels the need for undergoing basic training on computers but they do not have access to computers and other training material.
.Technical Journals and even newsletters from STI (T) are not available to staff of Lucknow.
.Office vehicle is available only for shift staff dropping and fetching. In case of any exigency during day times, no conveyance available to staff.
.Security aspect of the station is totally neglected. The duties of security officer has not been delegated with whom the staff may interact.
.D/G sets at both studio and HPT complex require remote operation to do away with the valuable loss of time to physically run to switch on the D/G sets in case of power failure.
.Access to Switch gear is not easy, the existing passage is via A/C plant room which is very inconvenient and dangerous.

South and Southeast Asia Conference at Colombo: UNI-MEI South and Southeast Asia Broadcasting Workers' Conference was held in Colombo, Sri Lanka, from 24 to 26 February 2005. Sh.Umesh Chandra, Addl.GS, Sh.R.Raman, VP(SZ), Sh.J.P.Sengupta, VP(EZ) and Sh.Arthur D'Souza, Organising Secretary, (MS) represented ARTEE in this conference. The conference was inaugurated by the Hon. Mr. Mahindra Rajapakse, Prime Minister of Sri Lanka, who spoke about the mix of commercial and Public Broadcasting which his government proposes for the country. The conference took place in the context of large scale relief efforts to deal with the devastation left by the recent tsunami catastrophe. Broadcasting workers from twelve Asian countries participated in the conference.
The conference explored methods of democratically drawing up demands, what the subject matter of agreements could be and the processes of collective bargaining. The subjects like "Effects of New Technology on Broadcasting", Equal Opportunity of Employment and Advancement in Broadcasting" etc. were discussed in detail. The visit to the Colombo Broadcasting Facility-SLRC & SLBC was also part of the conference. The interaction with the representatives of different countries regarding their facilities, systems, problems has certainly increased the knowledge on the field of Trade union of our representatives.
UNI APRO/FES workshop on enhancing skills of International Labour Standards & Framework Agreements at Colombo: The Workshop held from 9 to 15 may 2005 at Colombo, Sri Lanka was designed by UNI Apro for the purpose of increasing the skills of our affiliates on the use of International Labour standards as tools for achieving their trade union objectives. Especially, their role in campaigning and asserting for a social dimension in globalisation. Representatives from Bangladesh, India, Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka attended the workshop.
Sh.Debashis Chowdhury, VP(TV) represented ARTEE in the Workshop.

NFADE's meeting with Minister: Representatives of National Federation comprising 24 constituents met Hon'ble Minister of I&B Minister Sh. S. Jaipal Reddy on 4th amd 5th May 2005 to address apprehensions of the employees about their immediate transfer to Prasar Bharati. The following issues were discussed.
A. Follow-up action on the decisions in the meeting on 012-02-2005: At the outset the Federation expressed concern over slow implementation of the assurances given to the employees in the meeting on 1st February 2005 with regard to Central Pool Accommodation, CGHS facility and Central School Facilities. Minister informed the representatives that he had already taken up the matter with the appropriate authorities in the Government and expressed his hope that these issues would be sorted out at the earliest.

B. Finalisation of various Rules in Haste: The employees expressed their apprehension over the haste in which the rules relating to the service conditions of the employees to be transferred to Prasar Bharati and the Recruitment Rules for various posts in Prasar Bharati were being framed. Of late the issue had attained urgency due to the directions of the Supreme Court who has taken a serious view of the delay in finalizing the rules. The court has directed that a report be filed in this regard within a period of six weeks. After the receipt of these directions a fast track committee was set up to expedite the finalisation of the pending rules. They wanted the Fast Track Committee to be kept in abeyance. The minister informed the representatives that the recommendations made by the Prasar Bharati Committees will have to be first examined by the Board of Prasar Bharati and then competent authorities in the Government before a final view emerges. As regards the service conditions of the employees on their transfer to Prasar Bharati, MIB assured that these would in no way be inferior to whatever they were entitled to under Government.
C. Financial Viability of Prasar Bharati: Employee's representatives expressed their reservations about the financial health of the Corporation especially when internal resource generation during the preceding years is taken as the basis. The representatives were of the view that there was scope for the revenue generated. The Grant-in-aid was getting reduced and in future could be totally cut off. They wanted the present system of grant in aid to be stopped. Instead, the Prasar Bharati should be fully funded from the Consolidated Fund of India as is the case with the Election Commission, UPSC, and Supreme Court. They also requested that the Supreme Court should also be apprised of the financial health of Prasar Bharati.
Minister Said that the role of institutions like UPSC, Election Commission and Supreme Court is regulatory in nature and the role of Prasar Bharati is different and unique and cannot be compared with them. But he assured that job security as available to the Central Government employees and payments of salaries etc. would be ensured.
D. No Future cut in posts or proposals approved by Board: The employees representatives mentioned that there was an acute shortage of staff in both AIR and Doordarshan. A large number of installations have been operationalised by redployment of operational staff from existing facilities. They felt that it was no longer possible to operationalise any additional facilities by redeployment. Given this background they demanded that no existing post should be abolished, no employee should be declared surplus and that there should be no cuts in the demands made by the Corporation as approved by the Board.
Minister explained that Prasar Bharati cannot be exempted from the orders of the Government both on recruitment of staff and economy measures to which all Ministries, Departments and organizations of the Central Government are subjected to.
E. Loss of Fringe Benefits: The employees representatives put forth that a number of fringe benefits, which were available to them in their capacity as Central Government employees, were not being extended to them, consequent upon the formation of Prasar Bharati. Minister desired that all such benefits, should be listed and examined.
In the end Minister accepted the request of the federation to meet them again in future to carry forward the process of consultation with them, to resolve their problems. The meeting ended with thanks to the chair.

ARTEE's Meeting with DG (Doordarshan): The long awaited meeting was held on 26th April 2005, and following points were discussed.
Fresh Categorization of Stations: DG desired that the case of 17 stations be taken up with DG(AIR) as decided in an earlier meeting of ARTEE with E-in-C (DD). With regard to the de-categorization of Jammu which has been declared as two-years' tenure station, it was decided that to refer the case to DG(AIR) for reconsideration in view of the difficulties faced by the staff.
Automation of LPTs: E-in-C informed the Association members that a report on the staff requirement for automation of LPTs has been submitted by the sub-committee and is being examined in the Directorate. The terms of reference of this committee were to recommend the staff requirement for smooth functioning for auto-mode LPTs. As ARTEE's members wanted a copy of the report, DG pointed out that the matter can be discussed only after the report has been examined.
Misuse of Power of CE(WZ): The Association members submitted some more documents relating to the shifting of posts by CE(WZ). DG desired to seek necessary comments from CE(WZ) on the points contained in these papers. It was informed that in the meanwhile the power for shifting of posts in the subordinate Engg. Cadre has been withdrawn from the zonal Chief Engineers vide Directorate circular dated 8th April 2005.
Incident of LPT, Alirajpur: The incident relates to the threat to the staff in the cadre of Sr. Tech./ Tech by the local bad elements. The Association wanted the department to come to the rescue of Technician absconding from the place of work out of sheer fear. The matter is to be resolved by putting a VLPT setup instead of LPT.

Staff matters:
.In the case of premature transfer of Sh A.Suresh, The official minutes mention that "EA to LPT Jadcherala, Association wanted him to be posted at LPT Kosigi against SEA's post. DG assured to consider it after getting comments from CE(SZ)." But there is an error in the minutes where the name of Sh Suresh has been misquoted as Suresh Babu and place of his posting is not Jadcherala. It has been formally brought to the notice of DG(DD) with a request to issue corrigendum.
.On the Association's demand for transfer of SEA's post from LPT to PGF Chandigarh, it was informed that with the closing of LPT (DD News), transfer proposal for shifting of posts from LPT (DD News) Chandigarh has been submitted for approval of DG/ CEO and the point regarding providing staff to PGF Chandigarh has already been taken into consideration. After getting the approval necessary change will be implemented.
Policy on MLPT's: As decided in the previous meeting, a list of MLPT's giving the details of the facilities available at each MLPT was handed over to ARTEE representatives (Please see following Annexure-I). With regard to the closing of the MLPTs, it was informed that MLPT at Naushera (J&K) has been closed down and closing of LPT Dharamshal (J&K) is being examined by Transmitter Design. For providing basic amenities to MLPT's in Army/ BSF locations, HQ section of the Directorate is to pursue further.
DDK Agartala incident: Association brought to the notice of the chair the FIR lodged by the Executive Producer resulting in issue of non-bailable warrants against the Engineering staff at DDK Agartala. In this regard DDG (A) informed that necessary instructions have already been passed on to the concerned Executive Producer to withdraw the FIR and be not press for further action by local Police authorities.
Partial grant of SDA: Association raised the issue of grant of Special DA to the staff on election duty at DDK Ranchi. Citing the absence of detailed information, it was decided to refer the matter to DDK Ranchi for getting the facts of the case.
Engaging of Stingers in DDKs: The comments of the News Editor received from DDK Raipur as communicated by the Station Engineer were put up in the meeting. However DG wanted ARTEE to point out specific instances when the ENG team of DDK Raipur has not been deployed and coverage has been done by Stingers.
Proper Utilization of PGF Jalpaiguri: The Association wanted more allocation of time for local programmes so that more revenue could be generated from local advertisements. DG informed that this could not be agreed, as it will require de-linking of the TV programme from DDK Kolkata including the National Programme.
Narrow Casting and Mini DV Camera at PGF Thrissur and elsewhere LPT's: Association mentioned that Mini DV cameras are not being used for coverage by the cameraman, as they are not well conversant with them. As only Beta Cam Playback facility is available in all the LPTs it is not possible to use Mini DV cameras. It was decided that the operating personnel may be trained on usage of Mini DV cameras.
Any Other Matters: Under this heading the Association raised the issue of security arrangements in Orissa and provided a list of LPTs requiring augmenting of security measures due to Naxalite problems. While at some of the LPTs under various DMCs, action has already been initiated, and it was decided that such issues in general could be taken up with the state law and order authorities by DDG (Security).

Annexure-I (List of facilities available at MLPTs)
DMC (N) Srinagar
BEL MUV 187 500 W BEL MUV 187 500 W BEL MUV 187 500 W BEL MUV 187 500 W BEL MUV 187 500 W BEL MUV 187 500 W
DG Set Honda Honda Honda Honda Honda Honda
Make/model/capacity SH 15 D
15 KVA
(2 Nos)
SH 15 D
15 KVA
& 10KVA Kirloskar
SH 15 D
15 KVA
(1 No)
SH 15 D
15 KVA
(2 Nos) &
10 KVA Kirloskar
SH 15 D
15 KVA
(2 Nos) &
10 KVA Kirlsoskar
SH 15 D
15 KVA
(2 Nos)
No of AC being run on DG 2 2 2 2 2 2
Availability of power Not available V Not available Not available Not available Not available
Feasibility of landline/ mobile tel Both possible Only landline Both possible Both possible Only landline Both possible
Availability of Tel Nil. No Sanction Nil. No Sanction Nil. No Sanction Nil. No Sanction Nil. No Sanction Nil. No Sanction
Availability of overnight stay room Toilet/ Bathroom facility Available Available No Toilet Bathroom facility Available Not available Available
Location of site BSF Army Army Army Army BSF
Security arrangements Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Remarks One Honda SH 15 D Burnt in fire

DMC (S) Srinagar
Anantnag Kulgam Quazigund Wusan
GCEL 100 W
BEL MUV 187 500W BEL MUV 187 500W BEL 100 W
DG Set
SH 15 D
15 KVA
(2 Nos)
SH 15 D
15 KVA
(2 Nos) &
10 KVA Kirloskar
SH 15 D
15 KVA
(2 Nos)
SH 15 D
15 KVA
(2 Nos) &
10 KVA Kirloskar
No of AC being run on DG Nil 2 2 Nil
Availability of power Line has been installed Work under progress Available Available
Feasibility of landline/ mobile tel Only mobile feasible Both feasible Only landline Both feasible
Availability of Tel Nil. No Sanction Nil. No Sanction Nil. No Sanction Nil. No Sanction
Availability of overnight stay room Toilet/ Bathroom facility Room available. No Toilet Room available. No Toilet Room available. No Toilet Available
Location of site Army Army Army Not known
Security arrangements Army Security Army Security Army Security State Police
Remarks One Honda
SH 15 D
Burnt in fire

DMC Jammu (S)
DMC Rajouri and Poonch
MLPT Patnitop
BEL 500 W MUV 187 BEL 500 W
MUV 187
BEL 500 W
MUV 187
DG Set
Honda SH 15 D
15 KVA (2 Nos)
Honda SH 15 D
15 KVA
(1) 5 KVA Petrol generator Model UH 5E
(2) 7 KVA petrol generator Model UH 7 E (Honda make)
No of AC being run on DG 2 Nos (Heating circuit is run in winter) Nil ** Nil **
Availability of power Available Not Available
Feasibility of landline/ mobile tel Both landline and telephone feasible Only landline Only landline
Availability of Tel Nil. No Sanction Nil. No Sanction Nil. No Sanction
Availability of overnight stay room Toilet/ Bathroom facility Available Only room available. No toilet and bathroom facility. Available.
Location of site Forest Land Police station Police station
Security arrangements No security is deployed, however site is near Army camp Yes Yes
Remarks     SE intimated that ACs are not run As in Dharamshal
      ** Station Engineer has been asked to intimate the reasons for not running ACs.

(LPTs in most Naxalite Hit areas of Orissa-Information provided by ARTEE state office)
DDMC Jeypore
DDMC Bhawanipatna
DDMC Rourkela
DDMC Sambalpur
LPT Malkangiri
LPT Koraput
LPT Kotpad
LPT Padua
LPT Semilliguda
LPT Nawarangpur
LPT Jeypore
LPT Raygada
LPT Padampur
LPT Deogarh
LPT Kuchinda
LPT Rajgangpur
LPT Banei
LPT Biramitrapur
LPT Rairakhole
LPT Luthurpank
NOTE: Only DDMC Balasore has deployed 3 Nos of private security guards. Directorate approval is pending for private guards for LPTs under DDK Bhubaneshwar, DDMC Sambalpur, Bhawanipatna, Dhenkanal, Berhampore, Keonjhargarh and Rourkela.