New Delhi, Oct 15: IGNOU said it is in talks with Prasar Bharati to resolve its stand-off with All India Radio which has taken all 37 Gyanvani educational FM radio stations off the air, depriving many students of getting access to informal education.
The stations were taken off on October 1 due to non-payment of outstanding dues to the tune of Rs 21.64 crore by IGNOU. Officials in the varsity said they were hopeful of an early settlement of the issue even as they said that AIR had "suddenly" raised the fee last year.
Director General of AIR, F Sheharyar said they had sent several reminders to IGNOU for release of payment.
"However, IGNOU failed to make payment of outstanding dues inspite of continuous persuasion by AIR resources. IGNOU did not respond even to the request by Ministry of I&B (Information and Broadcasting) for release of outstanding dues," he told reporters.
AIR has been running these stations through contractual staff. Due to non-payment of dues by IGNOU, AIR field stations are not able to make payment to this outsourced professional manpower and have consequently been facing lot of embarrassment.
"Much to the discomfiture of the broadcaster, the unavoidable action on withdrawing the facility to IGNOU was taken which became effective from October 1, 2014," AIR said in a statement.