On removal of Romila Thapar and Rajendra Yadav from Prasar Bharati Board


The Government’s removal of the eminent historian Professor Romila Thapar and the noted writer Rajendra Yadav from the Board of the Prasar Bharati is arbitrary and unethical, and bodes ill for the independent functioning of our statutory institutions. The claim of ‘informed sources’ in the Information and Broadcasting Ministry that the two members have been removed because of the lack of ‘utility’ and ‘harmony’ due to their presence, is indeed ominous. It is not so much the technology as the content of the programmes of Prasar Bharati that crucially requires planning and assessment. That is why the presence on the Board of a historian of the stature of Romila Thapar and a literary and social critic like
chauvinistic view of our culture and heritage. The emphasis on ‘harmony’ laid by the Ministry sources is a mere cover for establishing a dictated uniformity where democratic norms and the airing of different opinions will be excluded.


Rajendra Yadav was so essential from the point of view of ‘utility’ itself. Their removal is yet another step in the present Government’s drive to present a one-sided,

While there are obvious constitutional and legal infirmities in the Government’s action, we hope that public opinion can be extensively mobilized on the issue so as to stay the Government’s hand and compel it to reinstate Romila Thapar and Rajendra Yadav, and thus allow Prasar Bharati to retain some credibility as an independent and creative institution.

Signed by:
M.K. Raina, Romi Khosla, Irfan Habib, R.S. Sharma, Prabhat Patnaik, Javeed Alam, Kumkum Sangari, Githa Hariharan, K.N. Panikkar, Dadi Pudumjee, Anil Nauria, Anil Bhatti, Madhu Prasad, Sashi Kumar, Ruchira Gupta, Kalpana Khosla, Biswamoy Patti, I.G. Khan, Ali Javed, Shireen Moosvi, D.N. Jha, K.M. Shrimali, Ram Rahman, Chanchal Chauhan, Javed Naqvi, Asghar Wajahat, Iqtidar Alam Khan, Anil Chowdhury