NEW DELHI: CPI(M) General Secretary Sitaram Yechury on Saturday hit out public broadcaster Doordarshan saying it is not the "private property" of the ruling BJP that "it does their public relation" exercise.
For the last few days, state-owned Doordarshan (DD) has been broadcasting reports showing people across the country thanking Prime Minister Narendra Modi and stating how they have benefitted from different schemes of the government.
"The public broadcaster runs on public money and is meant to perform public service. It is not private property of the BJP or Modi, where it does their PR. Those in charge must be held accountable for this deliberate distortion in these critical times of a public health emergency," Yechury said in a tweet.
He also accused the government of "benefitting rich cronies" at a time of crisis posed by the novel coronavirus outbreak.
In a tweet, Yechury said, "252 buses for free for the rich: Nothing except lathis for starving migrant workers -- another brutal reminder of how BJP has all along benefitted rich cronies at the expense of the many who need essentials. They bailed out rich borrowers by Rs 7.76 lakh crores - Rs 0 for the poor (sic)."
"If BJP govts can send luxury buses to get rich pilgrims from Uttarakhand and elsewhere back to Gujarat and UP sends 100 buses for 7,500 students of rich families from Rajasthan, Centre must arrange for stranded starving workers: Not doing so is criminal," he said.
The death toll due to COVID-19 rose to 480 and the number of cases to 14,378 in the country on Saturday, according to the Union Health Ministry.
While the number of active cases of the infection stood at 11,906, as many as 1,991 people have been cured and discharged while one had migrated, it said.