‘Paid News’ Slur On OTV

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Bhubaneswar: The BJD has accused OTV, a regional television channel, of violating the model code of conduct and “broadcasting paid news” on April 12.

A BJD delegation, comprising four party spokespersons, met the chief electoral officer Surendra Kumar in Bhubaneswar on Saturday and submitted a memorandum stating that on Friday, the channel broadcast a programme in which the anchor asked people who they were voting for.

The delegation also submitted a pen drive of the programme. The memorandum said: “Shockingly in the entire clip provided to you… Bhubaneswar Lok Sabha constituency which the Biju Janata Dal has been winning over the past several decades, the OTV anchor and the programme does not find a single person who has a positive word of Biju Janata Dal or the state government.”

It went on to say that the channel continues to only show people “who want a change in government and are against the BJD.”

The memorandum said OTV was working as the election communication platform for the BJP. “Therefore, we demand strong action against OTV for this kind of PAID NEWS content for the BJP.”

A BJD delegation had on Thursday accused BJP MP and Lok Sabha candidate Baijayant Panda of violating the Election Commission guidelines by giving a “media byte” and OTV of telecasting it during the “silence period” of the first phase of elections. Baijayant is the national vice-president of the BJP while his wife Jagi Mangat Panda is the proprietor of OTV.

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