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Doordarshan producer stopped live telecast of PM Narendra Modi’s Chennai event, suspended

  Public broadcaster Prasar Bharati has suspended the services of an assistant programme director at Doordrashan Kendra Chennai, who cut short the live broadcast of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s programme at IIT Madras earlier this week.

According to people aware of the developments, the live broadcast of the Singapore-India Hackathon at IIT-Madras which PM Modi attended was suspended on DD Podhigai (Tamil regional language channel).

The suspension order, viewed by HT does not mention the reason for the suspension; but says that the official, R Vasumathi has been suspended under central civil services rules of 1965.

“The official arbitrarily and without informing anyone cut short the live telecast. She has now been placed under suspended until disciplinary proceedings against her are completed,” said an official not wishing to be quoted.

A committee to inquire into the incident will soon be set up the official said.

The PM, who attended the convocation at IIT Madras, also attended the hackathon that had 20 teams of three university students, each from India and Singapore and focussed on the themes of good health and well-being, quality education, and affordable and clean energy.

The PM had appreciated the teams in a tweet that said, “ I congratulate the winners of the hackathon, and each and every young friend assembled here. Your willingness to confront challenges and find workable solutions is of much great value than just winning a challenge.”

In the past a news presenter who had read Chinese President Xi Jingping’s name as the Roman numerals XI was also dropped from the panel of newsreaders for Doordarshan. The slip-up had happened in 2014 during President Xi three-day visit to India.