Regulators

Govt: 17 new FM stations in 10th Plan

NEW DELHI: The policy changes are yet to be effected, but the government today informed the Parliament that 70 new FM radio stations are proposed to be set up during the 10th Five-Year Plan, which runs till 2007.

 

Information and Broadcasting minister Jaipal Reddy told Rajya Sabha (Upper House) today that in addition to the 70 new FM radio stations, 150 low powered FM transmitters were also being planned in areas not covered by radio broadcast. This, however, is subject to approval and availability of resources at the disposal of the government.

Maximum number of FM stations are being sought to be

set up in the states of Uttaranchal and West Bengal where seven frequencies in each state would be made available to interested players in cities like Dehradun, Haldwani, New Tehri, Rudraprayag, Darjeeling, Purulia, Bardhman and Balurghta.

 

 

But the strongest FM transmitters of 20 KW each are being made available to the border states of Punjab and Rajasthan in cities like Amritsar, Ramgarh and Chautam Hill.

In reply to another question, Reddy said that the changes in the existing FM radio policy were being finalised, but there was no proposal to review the DTH guidelines, notified in 2001.

According to information available with the Indiantelevision.com, the government is open to a revenue sharing model to help migrate the existing FM players into a new regime.

"As per a proposal that the I&B ministry will be circulating to other ministries for feedback, it has to be seen which of the options are feasible to pave the way for the opening of the second phase of FM Radio," a government official said last week.

The official added that the revenue shared percentage as suggested by the sector regulator (four per cent) seems to be on the lower side, which would effect government revenue collections.

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