Express Exclusive: Chhattisgarh govt pays for all TV news that is fit to buy
- Spot-fixing: Chandila was in touch with four sets of bookies, says Delhi Police
- Chinese Premier Li Keqiang arrives, to hold talks with PM on boundary, water issues
- IPL 2013: Delhi Daredevils crash to defeat, finish last
- Jaganmohan's wife attacks CBI, accuses it of working at Congress behest
- Blast accused death: UP govt seeks CBI probe, FIR against 42 persons
In May 2010, Hindi TV channel Sahara Samay presented a five-point proposal to the public relations department of the Chhattisgarh government about covering government activities during 2010-11:
1. Two-minute special package: Sahara Samay will show the package 15 times a day during news bulletins. It will contain "CM's speeches, government policies, and special news related to various departments." Cost: Rs 3.28 crore per year at Rs 3,000 per minute.
2. Live telecast of CM's public meetings: "Whenever the chief minister makes a visit or addresses any meeting anywhere in the state, Sahara Samay will deploy its OB (Outdoor Broadcast) van and telecast the programme live for 10 minutes." Cost: Rs 48 lakh per year for four broadcasts every month costing Rs 1 lakh each.
3. Ticker: People will be made aware of various government schemes for 10 hours a day, five of those hours during prime time. Cost: Rs 60 lakh per year.
4. Special package: "The channel will do a half-hour story on government schemes that have made a mark nationally, and how well Central schemes are being implemented in Chhattisgarh, and telecast it on its national, NCR and MP-Chhattisgarh channels. Schemes of the honourable CM will be presented in a better manner on the channel." Cost: Rs 50 lakh per year for two programmes a month.
5. Side panel: "It's a strip that will be displayed on 30 per cent of the screen and will carry a beautiful picture of CM Raman Singh with children and nice slogans." Cost: Rs 14.6 lakh per year.
The proposals did not raise any eyebrows at the PR department, even though a leading news channel was quoting a price for covering the government and not to produce sponsored programmes or advertorials. After all, such arrangements had been in vogue for at least three years and this was not the first time a TV channel had sought to enter into a coverage deal with the government. Sahara Samay and the department haggled over the rates before the proposals were approved.
- Former Ranji player among 3 more held
- Rajasthan Royals to file FIR against tainted trio
- If found guilty, BCCI to ask ICC to erase Sreesanth records
- Top cops among 42 named in death of blast accused
- PM takes tough line on incursion issue
- Security forces blame Maoists, villagers say CoBRA man was killed in ‘friendly fire’