Post-porngate, State plans telecast from Assembly

Post-porngate, State plans telecast from Assembly

The State government and the Legislature secretariat on Tuesday began a process to initiate telecast of the proceedings of the House.

At a high-level meeting attended by presiding officers of both Houses, Chief Minister D V Sadananda Gowda and senior officials of Doordarshan (DD) and the Broadcast Engineering Consultants India Limited (BECIL), it was decided to look into the feasibility of launching a separate channel on the lines of Lok Sabha TV, a dedicated satellite channel that telecasts Parliamentary proceedings.

Unlike in Parliament where then Speaker Somnath Chatterjee introduced direct telecast in 2004 with the purpose of taking the Lok Sabha proceedings to the people, the aim of the State government appears to be to control the telecast of the House proceedings by keeping out private TV news channels that  caused the ruling party in the state immense embarrassment by showing two ministers, Lakshmana Savadi and C C Patil watching sex video clips on a mobile belonging to a third minister, Krishna Palemar, even as the rest of the House was busy discussing other issues. The tainted trio was also forced to resign from their ministerial positions.

The proceedings will be recorded and the clippings will be provided to DD for telecast. This means the footage will be edited, ensuring that no porngate-like embarrassments will happen.

Speaking to reporters after the meeting, Sadananda Gowda said it was decided in the meeting to bring in order and discipline in both Houses.

“Hence, we are exploring the possibility of launching a dedicated channel. The intention is to uphold the dignity of both Houses. It is not aimed at banning the private news channels from covering the proceedings,” he stated.

Official sources said the meeting also discussed the possibility of entrusting to DD the responsibility of setting up the channel for which the BECIL, a Government of India enterprise, has prepared Rs 17-crore plan.

However, it was decided not to take any hasty decision on adopting a new system.
The presiding officers have been asked to collect information from all available options.

Sources also said Speaker K G Bopaiah and Council Chairman D H Shankar Murthy would soon visit Parliament House and study both technical and financial aspects of launching a dedicated channel on the lines of Lok Sabha TV.

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