What appears to have irked Prasar Bharti is an interview of the Chinese Ambassador to India which reacted by calling its ‘recent news coverage’ detrimental to ‘national interest’.
IANS wrote: “Sources say a “strong letter” is being sent to PTI just ahead of its Board meeting on Saturday where the public broadcaster expressed “deep displeasure on anti-national reporting by PTI”. The public broadcaster has communicated that the PTI’s editorial stance makes it untenable to “continue relationship”.”
An incandescent Prasar Bharti reportedly wrote, ‘taking into view in totality PTI’s conduct, Prasar Bharati is reviewing the need for continued relationship with PTI and a decision in this regard will be conveyed soon’.
Reacting to the letter, PTI said: “We have received a letter from the Prasar Bharati this afternoon. We are examining it and will respond in due course with the facts.”
Meanwhile, PTI called the criticism unfair, and called the backlash unwarranted. PTI told The Print that it had given a host of questions to the Chinese Ambassador but he had ‘conveniently ignored them and published only three answers as his main points’.
The Chinese Embassy of India had put up three questions asked by PTI and put up the three questions like a ‘press release’.
What appeared to be particularly offensive was this reply from the Chinese ambassador Sun: “The merits of this incident is very clear. The onus is not on China. The Indian side crossed the LAC for provocation and attacked the Chinese border troops. The Indian forces seriously violated agreements on border issues between the two countries and severely violated basic norms governing international relations. We urge the Indian side to conduct a thorough investigation, hold the violators accountable, strictly discipline the frontline troops and immediately stop all provocative acts to ensure such incidents will not occur again.”
PTI also appeared to note ANI’s interest in the story and wrote: “It is also interesting to note that among the critics quoted in your story is a member of the family that runs a rival private news agency.”