NBF Board also meets new I&B Minister, makes case for resumption of ratings

19 Aug,2021

By Our Staff


News Broadcasters Federation’s governing board members held a meeting with Union Information & Broadcasting Minister Anurag Thakur on Tuesday.  The Board apprised the minister on key issues facing the news industry, the recent growth and trends in the news broadcasting sector and the challenges facing the news broadcasting industry in recent times.


During the meeting, members of the NBF highlighted the need for the “immediate resumption of viewership ratings for the news genre, which have been unilaterally paused and has severely impacted the sustainability of  news channels”.


Said Thakur, “It was a pleasure to meet and exchange views with the NBF governing board led by Mr Arnab Goswami. It was a productive exchange of views and I look forward to engaging with the NBF on issues regarding news broadcasting and the role of news broadcasting in strengthening our democracy.”


Added Goswami: “The meeting of NBF members with the minister was a wonderful opportunity to apprise him about the steps we have taken to build India’s largest federation of news broadcasters. The minister has heard our views and concerns in detail and we look forward to working with the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting to make the news broadcasting sector even stronger.”


Added Barun Das, CEO of News9 Network and Vice President of the NBF: “It was a pleasure to be a part of the NBF delegation to meet the honourable minister of I&B. The highly competitive news TV genre certainly needs a level-playing field for new promising players both in the national arena and regional markets. We  felt extremely assured after our meeting today.” The TV9/News9 network is now back as an NBF member.


Added Shankar Bala, CEO of Fourth Dimension and Vice President of the NBF after the meeting with the Minister: “Today’s meeting was really pathbreaking. It was a great opportunity to meet the minister. He was extremely cordial and he heard us patiently. Whatever the issues were, those were addressed. We have particularly stated that it is essential to release the viewership ratings for news channels, which were unilaterally stopped. The resumption of the publication of news ratings will ensure fair play and a measurement-driven competitive news industry. We have a lot of expectations after our talks.”


And this is what Bhuyan Sarma, Managing Director of Pride East Entertainments said: “’It was a cordial meeting with Mr Anurag ji and it was a very positive meeting. As a team, NBF put forth the problems we tend to face and the ways in which we want to raise and address our concerns. At least, we can go forward and help regional industries survive, like ours. The minister gave us a patient hearing and we are very grateful to the ministry. We are now looking forward to the future and ways as to how we can progress together.”


Said Kartikeya Sharma, Promoter of ITV Network and Vice-President of the NBF:  “It was a very positive meeting with the minister. The minister heard out all the matters raised by various members of the NBF. I would like to thank the ,inister for hearing the viewpoints of all news channels from across India and from regional channels as well.”

The NBF delegation included Goswami, Das, Sanjive Narain, Founder/Managing Director of Prag News, Sarma, Sharma, Bala, Hemant Sharma, News Director of TV9 Bharatvarsh, Manoj Gairola, Editor-in-chief of News Nation, Mahendra Bhatla, Chairperson of MHOne, Divaakar S, Business Head of Newsfirst Kannada, R. Jai Krishna, Secretary-General of NBF and Eshita, Associate for Policy and Regulations of NBF.


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