news Wednesday, September 10, 2014 - 05:30
The News Minute| September 9, 2014| 11.00 pm IST On a day when journalists working with TV 9 Telugu and ABN Andhra Jyothi intensified their protests against a blackout of the channels by cable operators in Telangana for more than 80 days, Telangana Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao has threatened to bury alive TV channels that have dared to insult Telangana. Speaking at an event in Warangal KCR said, ‚ÄėWe will bury them, be careful. We will bury them some 10 km." Referring to the two channels that had aired programmes three months ago that many in Telangana protested as having crossed lines of decency, KCR said, "If they don't respect Telangana assembly, its character, attitude, existence and respect us,¬†we won't hesitate to break their neck and the throw them out." KCR also asked why a 'drama' was being enacted in Andhra Pradesh and Delhi, referring to the protests organised by journalists. "We will not allow idiotic games.¬†If you want to be here and live in this state, then salute us and respect people of Telangana," KCR added. He also sarcastically called the channels Andhrawallahs and said, 'Andhrawallas usually do this, these are called withdrawal symptoms,' in a reference to people living in the Seemandhara region. The state government has however insisted that they have nothing to do with the so called ban on the channels and that there is no official order to that effect. KCR however said today that if the two channels continue to insist on what they called "freedom" and did not correct their ways, they would have to face worse. The Telangana¬†government¬†has maintained till now that there is no official ban on the channels, but from his speech it becomes evident that he does not want to remove the 'unofficial blackout.' Read-¬†Why are TV9 Telugu journalists sporting black bands? In June, TV9 had aired a satirical programme that TRS said denigrated Telangana‚Äôs MLAs , MPs and MLCs. The ruling Telangana Rashtra Samiti (TRS) government had then termed the show ‚Äúderogatory, highly objectionable and in bad taste‚ÄĚ. On the other hand, the other TV channel, ABN Andhrajyothi TV had allegedly brought out a news report in its newspaper showing the ruling TRS government in ‚Äúbad light.‚ÄĚ The TRS‚Äô ire against the two channels also got some public support as many felt the channels had crossed a line. For many days, both channels apologized profusely to the politicians, but to no avail.¬† In an order dated on September 2nd, 2014, the Telecom Disputes Settlement and Appellate Tribunal (TDSAT) directed the responsible Multi-System Operators (MSOs) to resume transmission of TV9 news channel without delay. It said that ‚Äúas long as the contents of the petitioner‚Äôs (ABC) broadcast do not violate any law, the channels cannot be taken off- air on threat of violence‚ÄĚ. In spite of the order, the channels continue to be blacked out.

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