Ambika Soni to focus on 2010 Games, content code (Lead)

June 1st, 2009 - 9:41 pm ICT by IANS  

Ambika Soni New Delhi, June 1 (IANS) A new team at the information and broadcasting ministry got down to business Monday as Minister Ambika Soni mapped out an agenda focusing on better coverage of the 2010 Commonwealth Games and a “harmonious” relationship with the media.
Soni, 65, who was tourism and culture minister in the previous government, outlined her priorities that also include mobilising consensus on a contentious content code for news broadcasters.

“We want to project India in the Commonwealth Games in an incredible manner and that is our major priority,” Soni told IANS. The minister said she would ensure wide coverage of the sporting event.

Soni, who had quit the Indian Foreign Service to join politics, emphasised she would partner with the media and representatives of all stakeholders to handle issues relating to content code in as sensitive a manner as possible.

“We will try to bring a harmonious working relationship to the benefit and advantage of all,” Soni added.

“I will speak to all the stakeholders concerned on various aspects of the media industry. Anything related to the media will be made known to you in a transparent manner.

“Journalists are the important cog of the media machinery and whatever demands have been pending related to them would be addressed,” Soni told reporters.

Asked about the controversy surrounding the public broadcaster Prasar Bharati, she said:

“The matter is sub judice. Prasar Bharati is an autonomous body and we will go by the court order on it.”

Choudhury Mohan Jatua, a former IPS officer and Trinamool Congress MP, and S. Jagathrakshakan, DMK MP, also joined the ministry as ministers of state.

Soni said she would be sitting with her colleagues and senior officials to chalk out a programme of action for 100 days.

The new team was complete with Jawahar Sircar taking charge as the new secretary in the ministry. A 1975 batch West Bengal cadre officer, Sircar was holding charge of secretary in the ministry of culture.

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