Reducing targets no solution, Prasar Bharati needs to lead

NEW DELHI: The utilisation of Internal and Extra Budgetary Resources for New Content Development Scheme of Prasar Bharati generated by Prasar Bharati during the entire 12th Five Year Plan shows that the expenditure made was more than the revenue generated during 2014-15 and 2015-16, a Parliamentary Committee has noted.

The Committee noted that the expenditure made during 2015-16 through IEBR has exceeded the net revenue generated by Prasar Bharati on account of lower revenue generation. The net revenue generated by Prasar Bharati had declined from Rs 12.6712 billion in 2015-16 to Rs 8.5733 billion in 2016-17.

Gross Budgetary Support may replace IEBR for content development

Noting that this is mainly on account of increasing expenditure on Other Administrative Expenditure (OAE) head, the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Information Technology which also examines issues relating to Information and Broadcasting Ministry noted that the Government is considering a proposal for earmarking Gross Budgetary Support (GBS) for this scheme.

The IEBR for the Scheme was approved by erstwhile Planning Commission for the Twelfth Plan Period (2012-2017) only, the Committee was informed.

It was also told that the Ministry had made sincere efforts to reduce the OAE expenditure which had declined during 2016-17.

But the Committee took “serious note” of the fact that the Ministry was not able to achieve the gross revenue projections during the entire 12th Five Year Plan and had reduced its gross revenue projection in 2016-17 citing reasons that falling short of achieving the set target was affecting the morale of the sales/marketing teams and therefore proving counter-productive.

AIR shows growth trend, DD shows decline in commercial revenues

When the Committee asked why the net revenue generation by Prasar Bharati had been declining since 2014-15, it was informed by the Ministry that the trend of Commercial revenue earnings of All India Radio is indicating growth whereas the revenue earnings from sharing of its Resources mainly with private radio operators are marginally declining.

This shortfall of revenue took place in 2016-17 due to shifting of rotation of issuing of invoices to financial year 2017-18 for 84 private FM Channels due to the process adopted in getting technical/site clearances for 84 channels and handing over the same to M/s BECIL/Private FM Broadcasters.

However in Doordarshan, the main factors of decline in revenue are stated to be tremendous increase in competition in advertisement with private entertainment channels, development of new media platforms etc.

Some formidable steps have been taken by Prasar Bharati to improve its revenue like auctioning of time slots on DD-National channel; strengthening of sales and marketing teams of AIR and Doordarshan, including induction of sales/marketing professionals; tie-ups with e-commerce sites for better monetisation of AIR/DD archive products etc.

IEBR not going towards salary

The Committee also noted that Prasar Bharati was not spending its IEBR on excess paid for salary and excess paid for Plan Schemes since 2015-16. This is because the Cabinet decision of 14 September 2012 had said that the Government is to provide support to Prasar Bharati for meeting 100% expenses towards salary and salary related expenses. In addition to this, the Cabinet decided that the Government would provide funds in the form of Grant-in-Aid to Prasar Bharati for creation of Capital Assets.

MIB asked to strengthen marketing to compete with private channels

The Committee was of the opinion that considering the broad mandate of the Ministry, “reducing gross revenue projections will not solve the purpose and the Ministry needs to raise the bar of its sales and marketing teams so that the public broadcaster can sustain vis-à-vis private channels.”

In the light of the challenges faced by AIR and DD in the fast changing media developments, the Committee recommended that Prasar Bharati continue with their efforts of revenue generation and also frame a strategy to lead the competition as a public broadcaster.

The Committee also recommended that steps be taken by Prasar Bharati to digitalise the vast archives of AIR and DD and generate revenue by making use of the rich archives. Efforts should also be made towards making these archives more accessible to the public. The Committee said it would like to be informed about the decision taken in respect of financing New Content Development Scheme of Prasar Bharati.

Latest Reads
TRAI extends dates for comments on uplinking/downlinking consultation paper

The Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) has extended the deadline for receiving comments on the consultation paper relating to uplinking and downlinking of TV channels. The new dates for receiving comments and counter-comments are 31 January and 10 February respectively.

Regulators TRAI
TRAI invites ICT-based solution providers to upgrade tech

NEW DELHI: With the demand for a wide range of services based on ICT platform involving machine-to-machine and internet of things, etc. increasing, Indian broadcast and telecom regulator TRAI is looking at expanding its technical capabilities and, in this regard, has invited proposals from...

Regulators TRAI
MIB mandates broadcasters to make applications via Broadcast Seva

MUMBAI: In its latest move to ensure ease of conducting business, the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting (MIB) has mandated TV broadcasters to make online applications for a range of submissions.

Regulators I&B Ministry
TRAI releases paper on National Telecom Policy 2018

Seeking views from stakeholders on the new telecom policy, the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) today released a consultation paper on inputs for formulation of the National Telecom Policy 2018.

Regulators TRAI
TRAI tightens the screws on interconnectivity for telcos

The Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) has issued a mandate to service providers directing them to enter into an interconnection agreement on a “non-discriminatory basis” within 30 days of receiving a connectivity request from another mobile operator.

Regulators TRAI
Cross-media holding: Indian policymakers push for regulations

A section of policymakers in India is not in favour of market forces taking care of monopolistic trends in the increasingly converging print and electronic media. It has recommended government intervention—a thought-process that can have wide-ranging implications on activities of broadcasting...

Regulators I&B Ministry
Parliamentary panel pushes for TRAI's empowerment

MUMBAI: Parliament’s Standing Committee on Information Technology and Communications (SCIT) wants more regulations for the broadcast industry. Finding the current powers given to the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) inadequate, it has recommended that either the scope of its authority...

Regulators TRAI
Parliamentary panel raps MIB on knuckles for DAS implementation

MUMBAI: The Parliament’s Standing Committee on Information Technology and Communications (SCIT) has sent out a stern message to the stakeholders of India’s broadcast and cable industry, including the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting (MIB): get your acts together.

Regulators I&B Ministry
Bharat Net project to provide 1gbps broadband bandwidth in villages

NEW DELHI/MUMBAI: The Indian government’s proposal of providing hi-speed broadband services to rural areas seems to be on track. It said that in the second phase of the ambitious Bharat Net project, covering approximately 150,000 gram panchayats, it has been proposed to provide 1gbps bandwidth in...

Regulators TRAI

Latest News

Load More

Sign up for our Newsletter

subscribe for latest stories