Television professionals lock doors of DDK, Srinagar

Say Kashmiri programs, culture, language replaced by Hollywood films

Srinagar, Dec 24: Hundreds of television professionals including artists, singers, technicians, private producers and directors today staged protest demonstrations at Press Colony and later locked door of Doordarshan Kendra Srinagar. They were protesting against the stopping of local Kashmiri programmes by Prasar Bharati authorities and replaced them by telecasting Bollywood Hindi feature films during prime time.
Doordarshan Kendra Srinagar and particularly DD Kashir Channel was launched in the year 2000 by the then prime minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee with the promise that channel will be for the promotion of Kashmiri culture, language and the young local talent.
Few years ago DDK Srinagar was the main attraction for the people of Jammu and Kashmir for its popular programmes in Kashmiri and Dogri languages.
Since, 2011 the DDK, Srinagar and DD Kashir decided to shift their focus from local professionals and culture to programs acquired from outside state. This process left thousands of the state based television professionals with no work and the culture and language of the state also was forced to take back seat.
With the shift of focus by New Delhi, the channel lost the viewership overnight. To add insult to the injury Prasar Bharati Mandi House started airing Bollywood feature films on daily basis during prime time which has angered local population who see this act as cultural invasion by authorities in New Delhi.
Senior Filmmaker of the state Shahzad Rasool said, “Prasar Bharati has betrayed us. First they stopped work to us. Denied our long pending payment. Now has waged a war against Culture and language of Kashmir which cannot be tolerated. They have started a cultural invasion against people of Jammu and Kashmir by telecasting Bollywood films on daily basis at the cost of Kashmiri drama, musical shows and literary programs which i
Ironically, the kendra telecast only morning show which is a bilingual programme. And the rest of telecast time has been taken by Hindi films and programs made in Delhi and Mumbai by non local private producers.
Recently, Prasar Bharati had approved a multi crore budget program Koun Banega Crorepati Kashmir in favour of Bengal based producer who happens to be a close relative ruling party leader at the centre. The program has a whopping budget of sixteen crores which was basically meant for acquisition programs for producers from Jammu and Kashmir. Surprisingly, not a single professional from the state is involved in the program which will be made from the budget meant for local professionals.

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