Turn on that switch!

The signal stops here

The signal stops here

It’s been one week since the National Assembly discontinued live TV coverage of its proceedings. And most of us have now resigned to the fact that the National Assembly’s discussions are not broadcast on live TV.

Not our villagers though. I still receive calls to appeal, on their behalf, for resumption of live coverage – on radio and TV – of the Assembly’s proceedings. Today, for instance, Tashi Gyeltshen telephoned me. Tashi is from remote Merak in Trashigang. And he’s a yak herder. He called to tell me that he wants to listen to the Assembly sessions on his radio. And, that he misses watching the sessions on live TV when he visits his gewog centre.

Incidentally, that TV set, complete with satellite dish and generator, was installed by the government to increase the public’s participation in the democratic process. In fact, every one of our 205 gewogs, including the remotest ones, were similarly equipped to allow our people to learn about and contribute to His Majesty the King’s vision of a vibrant democracy.

And then there are the BBS cameramen. Three of them are still stationed strategically, to cover every moment of the Assembly’s debates. They don’t sit. They can’t sit. They are on their feet, hours on end, operating their cameras that send live TV signals to the outdoor broadcasting van parked outside the Parliament. All that prevents the TV signals from going any further is the microwave transmitter switch in the OB Van.

Turn on that switch, and the TV signals would be instantaneously transmitted to the signal receiver tower in Sangaygang. From there, fibre optic cables would carry the signals to the BBS’s National TV Centre in Chubachu, where  the satelite earth station would beam them to INSAT4 A, an Indian satellite that BBS is allowed to use free of charge. That satellite would beam the signals right back to earth, and to Merak, where the live TV images would be received on their satellite dish. And, viewed by Tashi Gyeltshen the next time he visits his gewog centre.

On behalf of all the Tashi Gyeltshen’s in all our villages, I appeal to our honourable speaker and the members of parliament to allow the resumption of live TV and radio broadcast. And on behalf of the media I say: let BBS turn on that switch!


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  1. babyanimal says

    sometimes i wish our hon. MPs are more matured and use their common sense.

  2. The power of the bloody switch!! ha hahaa..

  3. what is democracy for DPT Government?.DPT is going against all norms of democracy…no live coverage of BBS…no ministers are attending NC question hour session..where National council canot screw DPT government…check n balances..this is not true democracy…. i will not vote for DPT nest time.i am really frustrated with DPT.Lyonpo Please make your party strong and win nest election. i think 75% of the population will give your party vote if your party workers start working from now.Appoint in all dzongkhags good party coornidtaors not like before. You have to make lot of market research and come out with effective startegies to topple this DPT government. iam really sad of Lyonpo SN of not taking iniative of organizing party with his “leadership”. When i get information through media iam really upset… “how political parties can survive?”.If your party does not come out with Lyonpo SN “leadership” and no political fundings then for me and loyal citizens of Bhutan should disolve the parliament and King should rule country…after all..long live the king.i have no options.iam happy that you and Gasa MP Damchu are making NA run with critics against DPT govt. But what to do majority is with DPT.

  4. true bhutanese citizen says

    m studying abroad n came to know through ur blog that live tv coverage of NA proceedongs have been discontinued. its pretty sad tat democratic nation blockin informatoin to the public. i would now urge people not to vote for DPT next time. i request lyonpo to organize ur party well from now n m damn sure ur party will win nexttime. DPT, i feel is not working according to principles of democracy. plz do somethin lynpo….

  5. Tshewang:
    I think it’s better for ex lyonpo SN to distence himself from politics. I think he got clear message from the people of Bhutan in our last election. It’s not about him, I think it has to do more with some members of his family: namely his father and brother. I think he didn’t understand the mindset of Bhutanese people because he was surrounded by all those sycophants and never really get to know how people really think about him. Even if he ran for pm’s office in the next election I don’t think he will win. But I’m pretty sure pdp will win if the candidate running from pm’s office is sombody else but not SN. I’ve nothing against SN;it’s just how most of Bhutanese people feel about him and he should know it so that he can change the mindset of the Bhutanese people about his image if he aspire for a primeministership in the future.


  1. […] am hopeful that the Speaker will allow the resumption live TV broadcast. […]

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