NEW DELHI: The Department of Telecom has been asked to issue detailed guidelines by 12 October to bring into force a decision to totally waive spectrum fee for community radio services.
Instructions to this effect have been issued by the Communications & IT Minister Kapil Sibal, following requests received from National
Advisory Council, Information and Broadcasting (I&B) Ministry, and the Community Radio Association.
Sibal said the Government's role is to create an enabling environment for CRS, and he wanted guidelines to ensure that the spectrum is
optimally used and the channels use these airwaves only to inform and empower the common man.
It was felt that in the interest of inclusive and informed society, it is apt that Government provides the spectrum (airwaves) for CRS at
zero cost. Although this may result in an opportunity cost of around Rs. 2.5 million to the Government, the cost is far outweighed by the
benefit of informed, empowered and inclusive local communities and the nation.