Govt mulls USO fund for Prasar Bharati,
DD Direct Plus Relaunch Idea on Commercial Platform with increased channels
Very nice idea.
New Delhi: A government-appointed committee is considering Universal Services Obligation (USO) levy on private channels to fund broadcasting by Prasar Bharati or provide fixed time to air programmes created by the public broadcaster.
The idea is aimed at financial restructuring of Prasar Bharati. One of the 11 sub-groups constituted by a panel headed by technocrat Sam Pitroda is considering various ways in which revenue stream of Prasar Bharati can be strengthened, officials said.
Sources said some of the ideas that were discussed in one of the meetings of the group focused on strengthening the existing revenue streams and creating new ones by levying USO fee on private channels to augment Prasar Bharati.
USO is access to telegraph service to people in rural and remote areas at affordable and reasonable prices.
Among other ideas discussed to generate revenue included leveraging land and technical resources of Prasar Bharati, buying and exclusive marketing of films, cricket and programmes, launching government certified educational programmes on Doordarshan and marketing research data of DD and All India Radio.
"The ideas were discussed but are yet to take a concrete shape in the coming days. Apart from trying to discover new revenue streams, there were attempts to strengthen existing revenue streams. However, it will take more discussions and sanction of committee members before the ideas are recommended to the government," a source said.
Officials said another idea discussed was to utilize Doordarshan's Direct to Home wing for augmenting revenue.
The idea suggested was to launch DD Direct plus on a commercial platform, maybe in association with a private player and increase the number of channels.
Sources said one of the ideas suggested at the meeting was to relook at some of the Doordarshan channels and restructure channel portfolios.
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