Dr. Subhash Chandra, Chairman, ZEE Media and Essel Group said at an event, that he is not against international ownership in the news media, but as long as the rule is reciprocal in that country. “I am not against the 49% foreign ownership in the news media or even 100% for that matter. But together as a sovereign nation I will still voice if Americans want 100% ownership of news here, they should give me 100% news ownership in that country. As long as they give reciprocal deal I have nothing against them,” he said.
Speaking to journalist and author, Shankkar Aiyar, Dr. Chandra said that the question is on the ownership of news channel broadcasters today. “There are about 300 channels running, I can bet that 70% of them are owned by people those who are not eligible to own those properties. Our law is clear that no political party should own any news channel. The ownership of the channels is very opaque,” said Chandra.
Dr. Chandra further said that the government has to do more in terms of implementing the laws for the news media in a stricter form. He said that the government has to take a much deeper look into the financial investment that is coming into a TV news broadcaster, instead of giving them the security clearance.
When asked whether political parties are gaming the media he said yes. “Yes definitely, they know that when there is a big issue and big controversy is going to has erupted so if that doesn’t become big they throw something else and they know that the whole media because of TRPs will run after it and that news goes on air. That game they have perfected now and we fall for it.”