NEW DELHI: Doordarshan and All India Radio have embarked upon a project to immortalise over 60 maestros such as Hindustani classical vocalist Pandit Jasraj and veteran playback singer Lata Mangeshkar along with their “signature performances.”
The list of legendary artistes earmarked for the archival series project includes Hindustani vocalist Kishori Amonkar, Carnatic vocalists M Balamuralikrishna and Nedunuri Krishnamurthy, composer M S Viswanathan, Carnatic flautist N Ramani, Sarangi player Ustad Sabri Khan, and Mridangam maestro T K Murthy among others.
While both AIR and Doordarshan already have extensive archives and work for archiving other works is in progress, Prasar Bharati CEO Jawhar Sircar said the main purpose of fast tracking the archival material of AIR and DD is to disseminate digital wealth to the public at large.
Prasar Bharati has constituted a National Archival Committee of experts which includes Prema Cariappa, Shubha Chaudhuri, Uma Shankar, Suresh Chand Vankar and other senior officers from Doordarshan and AIR for the purpose of developing a roadmap.
Doordarshan and AIR have already started compiling the data to ensure that the high-quality video and audio content is brought in the public domain.
Prasar Bharati has instructed both Doordarshan and AIR to create a world class archival wing to digitize and fast track the development of its archival material.
The task of indexation/categorisation/creation of metadata of the archived programmes so as to make them accessible at a later stage have already been initiated. The archival material would thus be repurposed and repackaged before it is being brought into the public domain.
Noting that the reach of All India Radio and Doordarshan was the largest among all radio and TV channels and yet its advertising revenue was the lowest, a Parliamentary Committee had some years earlier said the public service broadcasters needs to project itself to the public.
The Parliamentary Standing Committee on Information Technology said that according to the Information and Broadcasting Ministry both AIR and DD Archives can be a rich source of revenue generation.
It said there is ‘urgent need’ to explore the ways to earn revenue nationally and internationally from these treasures on the part of the Ministry as well as All India Radio and Doordarshan.
The Committee recommended that the details of the archives which can be made commercially available should be put on the website of Doordarshan/All India Radio/Ministry and publicised through various mechanisms which would definitely help in generating more revenue from this precious resource.
The extent of revenue that can be generated through these archives is evident from the fact that the footage for one minute is provided by Doordarshan at the rate of Rs 6000 per minute to people making documentaries for telecast on any channel. The Committee was informed that 100 DVD titles have been handpicked from the Archive of Doordarshan and are available for viewing to the public at large.