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Mainstream, VOL LVIII No 33, New Delhi, August 1, 2020

Avoid Telecast of Religious Function in Ayodhya of 5th August 2020 on Govt. Owned TV Network - Letter from CPI Leader Binoy Viswam

Friday 31 July 2020

DOCUMENT

Binoy Viswam
116, North Avenue New Delhi - 110 001
[Phone & email]

To

Shri Prakash Javadekar, Minister of Information and Broadcasting Government of India

Date: 27.07.2020

Respected Shri Prakash Javadekar ji,

The demolition of the Babri Masjid in 1992 and the subsequent mobilization around the Ram Janbhoomi Temple in Ayodhya has been a source of conflict and disharmony in the country for decades now. Despite the ruling of the Hon’ble Supreme Court, the fissures caused by the entire episode has left an indelible mark on Indian society. The Prasar Bharti Act, which governs the functioning of Doordarshan, in section 12 2(a) clearly states that its objective is “upholding the unity and integrity of the country and the values enshrined in the Constitution”. As the national broadcaster for a country that is founded on the principles of secularism and religious harmony, the use of Doordarshan to broadcast the religious function at Ayodhya on 5th August is contrary to the accepted norms of national integrity.

In a secular democracy, state practice and organizations must be kept devoid of religious inclinations and attempts must be made to ensure that the religious sentiments of all communities are respected. Given the historicity of the dispute over the land where the religious function is to take place, it would be mature for the Government to resist attempts to politicize the issue and ensure that the secular image of the State is not compromised.

As a broadcasting channel governed by an arm of the State, the use of Doordarshan to telecast the religious function in Ayodhya must be avoided. As Minister for Information and Broadcasting, it is incumbent on you to ensure that organizations under your leadership uphold the Constitutional values that govern our country.

Yours sincerely

Binoy Viswam, Leader of CPI Parliamentary Party & Secretary, National Council

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