Mangaluru: “All India Radio (AIR) & Door-Darshan (DD) is the National Public Service broadcaster with the objective to educate, inform and entertain. It also works as the mouth of the Govt of the day, informing the policies of the Government covering almost 100% of area and citizen without any discrimination of caste, creed, and religion. The staff of AIR & DD feels proud and highly thankful to our beloved Hon’ble Prime Minister Sri Narendra Modi for choosing this media for his unique program – “MANN KI BAAT’’ said Chandrashekhar-Coordinator of ARTEE, while addressing the media persons during a press meet held Mangalore Press Club.
He further said, “We thank the Hon’ble Chief Minister of Karnataka Sri Siddaramayya for entrusting AIR & DD to address the farmers on their serious issues as well as popular policies for the poor. AIR, Mangalore is catering the needs of the people of more than 5 Districts of the State and a good part of Kerala with its 10 KW FM Transmitter at Mangaluru and 20 KW AM Transmitter at Brahmavar reaching around 3 lakhs people with popular programs with digital quality. The locality of AIR Brahmavar is chosen such a way that it is provided with enough area to install 109 mts. Antennas causing powerful RF Radiation, dangerously high voltage, wires running beneath the ground and provides safety on electrocution for any thoroughfare”.
“The area has been purchased by AIR vide Survey No, 95/1A consisting 14.10 acres from Revenue Department on 1.10.1971, private land of 8.86 acres purchased vide Survey No. 2/5, 2/8, 2/9, 2/10A, 2/17, 2/18, 2/19A and 2/26 on 11.12.1972. The existing road around the area is property of AIR constructed as cart road in 1974 and given to the general public for utility and goodwill. The whole area is covered by Official Secret Act 139(A)”.
“The compound wall in the left side, which is inside of the road, was noticed with damage a few months back. When the office took up the work of Reconstruction, surprisingly there was protest by a few local demanding lands for road widening, the matter has been clarified in various means but when the work was taken up again, there was protest by a group asking for 10 ft. width of land belonging to AIR. Recently, another group was spotted asking for 2 ft. land. A few persons have approached Hon. Court for AIR’s land, The Panchayath Development Officer has written to the office to carry out re-construction work immediately to avoid any danger but contradicting that the Panchayath President served a letter to stop the work demanding land” added Chandrashekar.
“On 8.8.2015, when the RE-CONSTRUCTION work was taken up, there was a sudden assembly of mob threatening the staff to stop the work or to face consequences. The staff had to continue with the work as it is their duty. The local MLA appeared at the venue, sent a letter to the office requesting to provide 5 ft. land which is not in the purview or capacity of the working staff at the site. The Ex-MLA also visited the site pressurizing the staff to stop the work. Unfortunately, there were enough loose talks, threats to the government employees instead of appreciating the staff for continuing the work with utmost dedication towards the property of the Government. There was chaos and interruptions”.
“ARTEE [Association of Radio & TV Engineering Employees] is the largest media association recognized by the Government, working for the welfare of engineering staff joining hands with the function of the national public service broadcaster. We are highly thankful for the support of higher authorities as well as the Brahmavar Police who inspire us to carry on. The unruly crazy mob has made the workers fear-stricken and unrest. We strongly suspect foul play by some vested interest behind the whole episode which has made the national public service broadcaster suffer”.
Concluding, Chandrashekar said, ” The land belong to us. Therefore, we request the locals, general public, leaders of the society, the media and our listeners to understand the gravity of the situation where there is a land grab effort from unseen corners which is also noted in other parts of the country and support us. We, the employees of AIR & DD are committed to – – -‘SAVE LAND—SERVE PEOPLE”
PR Sripathi Bhat- Unit Secretary-ARTEE/AIR Mangaluru, Ravindra Tantry and Neelayya-Board members of ARTEE/AIR/Doordarshan were also present during the press meet.