The Information & Broadcasting Minister Manish Tewari has said that to give a fresh impetus to the Community Radio movement in India, the government is planning to allocate 100 crore rupees in the 12th Five Year Plan. It was also proposed to set up 500 new Community Radio Stations (CRS) during the Plan period, he said this while speaking at the 3rd National Community Radio Sammelan in New Delhi this week.
The Minister said his Ministry had identified key benchmarks for the Plan period whereby a road map would be prepared to provide assistance for operating Community Radio Stations. While elaborating on the proposal of the Plan fund, he said 90 crore rupees had been proposed for providing financial support, while 10 crore rupees was proposed for training, capacity building and awareness activities of CRS. The Minister also said provisions had also been made for giving grants in this sector for research and innovations.
In order to encourage working of Community radio stations, several key proposals and initiatives were being looked into that included Peer Review of Community Radio Stations, capacity building of community radio operators and Code of Ethics for self-regulation of content by CRS. The Minister also said efforts were being made by the ministry in coordinating relevant issues with Ministry of Communications and IT with regard to better frequency allocation plan for the CRSs. The Minister has categorically said that his Ministry had taken the initiative to promote the streamlining and simplification of Community Radio empanelment through DAVP thereby ensuring that empanelled stations got a fair share of government advertisements. (Source : PTI and Agencies)