Prasar Bharati CEO turns down BBC invite citing 'one sided' reporting on Delhi violence

Vempati had been invited for the BBC's Indian Sportswoman of the Year awards ceremony due to be held in New Delhi on March 8.

Published: 06th March 2020 04:50 PM  |   Last Updated: 06th March 2020 04:50 PM   |  A+A-

The logo of Prasar Bharati.

The logo of Prasar Bharati.


NEW DELHI: Prasar Bharati CEO Shashi Shekhar Vempati has turned down an invitation from the BBC to attend an awards function for Indian sportswomen, citing the British broadcaster's "one-sided" reporting on the Delhi violence.

Vempati had been invited for the BBC's Indian Sportswoman of the Year awards ceremony due to be held in New Delhi on March 8.

"I must respectfully decline the invitation in view of the recent coverage of the BBC of certain incidents of violence in Delhi," Vempati said in his letter to British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) Director General Tony Hall.

"As a fellow public broadcaster of global repute, it is dismaying that the BBC has filed such a singularly one-sided version of the incidents of violence in Delhi which rather than help break the cycle of violence has only contributed to further vitiating the atmosphere while insinuating the brave men and women in uniform who are charged with the onerous responsibility of maintaining law and order," he wrote in the letter dated March 4.

In the said report certain visuals have been shown of the Delhi Police without context to insinuate communal behaviour, he added.

Unfortunately, nowhere in the entire report have the BBC journalists mentioned the murderous assault on the men in uniform by a mob which resulted in the death of a head constable in the line of duty and also resulted in the fatal injuries received by a deputy commissioner of police in uniform, the Prasar Bharati CEO said.

The report was also "damningly silent" on the murder of an Intelligence Bureau official.

"BBC and Prasar Bharati must respect the sovereignty of the nations we primarily serve even as we collaborate beyond borders on multilateral fora for the greater global good," Vempati said.

"I hope the BBC would review its editorial views on reports of this nature in line with this spirit," he said.


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