Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan on Sunday accused the Centre of "saffronisation of news" by designating an allegedly Sangh Parivar-affiliated media agency as the sole news source of state-run broadcaster Prasar Bharati. The Chief Minister was referring to the Centre's decision to appoint Hindustan Samachar as the sole news source for Prasar Bharati which operates the Doordarshan TV network and Akashvani, also called All India Radio. Vijayan contended, in a statement issued by the Chief Minister's Office (CMO), that appointing Hindustan Samachar as the news source for the state-run broadcaster by terminating services of agencies like PTI and UNI amounted to "saffronisation of news".
He alleged that this was a move to bring Doordarshan and Akashvani into the folds of the Sangh Parivar and was therefore a threat to democracy. Hindustan Samachar was founded by RSS leader Shivram Shankar Apte, also the founder general secretary of Vishwa Hindu Parishad and it has always worked for the Sangh Parivar, Vijayan claimed in the statement. The Sangh Parivar has been trying to keep Prasar Bharti under its control ever since it came to power, he further claimed.
This, he said, was evident from the Centre's 2020 decision to appoint Jagdish Upasana, the group editor of RSS publications Panchajanya and Organiser, as the chairman of Prasar Bharti's recruitment board. Besides that, Prasar Bharti showed live RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat's Vijayadashami speech, but did not broadcast the Independence day speech of the Chief Minister of Tripura, he claimed. All this indicates the implementation of the fascist desire that no voice of dissent should be heard, Vijayan alleged and urged the secular democratic society of the country to recognise and protest against this threat to democracy.