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Press, Trust and India: Govt Mulls Its Own News Service

Now that the national public broadcaster Prasar Bharati has ended its subscription with news agencies Press Trust of India (PTI) and United News of India (UNI), the proposal for the broadcaster to start its own news service is likely to be revived. The Narendra Modi government is known to be quite precise in the message it wants to convey and there have been occasions when it felt that the news agencies, particularly the PTI, were not able to do the needful. To reduce reliance on PTI, the government had envisaged its own news agency – the Prasar Bharati News Service (PBNS) – and even prepared a proposal. PBNS made its debut on Twitter onApril 2019as a “Digital News Service of India’s Public Broadcaster - Breaking Alerts, Digests & curated Developing Stories from across the Globe”. Sources in the government claim that the endeavour was to launch a full-fledged news agency, utilising the available huge network of Doordarshan and All India Radio (AIR) that respectively includes 700 and 400 reporters across the country. “For some administrative and bureaucratic reasons, the proposal has been stuck. Now that PTI and UNI are formally out, the proposal of news agency under Prasar Bharati will be revived,” reveals a senior government official.........Read more