An empanelled newsreader for Doordarshan has been debarred from service after a gaffe with Chinese president Xi Jinping’s name. In a September 16, 2014 bulletin, the newsreader confused the Chinese head of state's name for the Roman numeral ‘XI’ and read his name out ‘Eleven’ Jinping. The identity of the newsreader has not been revealed.
Archana Dutta, Director General for DD (News) confirmed this incident to exchange4media. “She was a casual newsreader and we have discontinued her service,” she said. According to Dutta, empanelled newsreaders are standby substitutes, most with other jobs. They are asked to step in when there is a shortage in the regular roster and usually have to fill in for not more than seven days a month “This is not a case of firing or sacking anyone, since she was a casual reader, though we have removed her from the panel,” informed Dutta.
When asked about whether there would be any policy changes with regards to casual newsreaders, Dutta said the emphasis should be on briefing anchors on pronunciation, especially in case of names. “This was an unforgivable mistake. We have a strict policy of screening for casual newsreaders and we will now be monitoring them more closely,” said Dutta.