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Lalli Could Face Suspension In A Couple Of Days: Soni

PTI 10 Dec 2010, 20:55:42 IST
PTI
New Delhi, Dec 10: Controversial Prasar Bharati CEO B S Lalli could face suspension "in a day or two" in the wake of Presidential nod for a Supreme Court inquiry into charges against him.

"The option of his suspension is under consideration," Information and Broadcasting Minister Ambika Soni told reporters when asked about the future course of action against Lalli who is facing charges of irregularities.

She said that the file regarding Lalli came to her ministry from the PMO late last evening. "The Ministry is looking at the Prasar Bharati Act and the next step will be as per the provision in the Act," she said.

Asked when a decision would be taken on the issue of Lalli's suspension, she said, "it will be out in a day or two".

The President has given her assent for a Supreme Court inquiry into charges of financial mismanagement against Lalli, setting in motion the process for his removal from the post.

The assent had come on a reference made by Prime Minister Manmohan  Singh as required under the Prasar Bharti Act.

According to the Act, the Chairman or a Member of Prasar Bharti can only be removed by an order of the President on the ground of misbehaviour after the Supreme Court holds an inquiry following a reference to it.

Pending inquiry, the chief executive officer can be placed under suspension as per the provisions of the Act.

Lalli, who assumed the CEO's office in December 2006, was indicted by the Central Vigilance Commission which accused him of breach of Parliamentary privilege, giving undue favours to some broadcast companies and financial mismanagement.

The controversial 1971 batch IAS officer of UP cadre, Lalli, 63, has been having a feud with the Prasar Bharti Board on running the organisation. PTI