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FM Radio to make way in far flung areas: Govt
The Government is committed towards the expansion of FM radio in far flung areas of the country. I&B ministry said that the e-auction process of Phase III of the FM radio licensing is on track.

ADDRESSING INDUSTRY leaders at the CEOs Roundtable on Radio, organized by the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII), Uday Kumar Varma, Secretary, Ministry of Information & Broadcasting, made it clear that radio sector is the top priority for the ministry.

"We are very positive on the growth of radio sector and expansion of FM radio in border areas and far flung areas across the country. We will relentlessly pursue the wonderful opportunity of radio as a powerful dissemination mechanism of communication," said Varma, in a statement.

The auction process for FM Phase III in radio is aimed at adding another 839 stations in over 290 towns and cities and is likely to commence by the end of the current financial year. I&B secretary asked radio industry to clearly specify incentives that would benefit the sector FM Phase III licensing."Our ministry is open to all suggestions and we would like to get clear signals from the industry,” added Varma.

Amit Khanna, Chairman CII National Committee on Media & Entertainment and Chairman Reliance Entertainment said the industry should work towards innovation and encourage more diversity of programmes in FM radio stations.

Prashant Panday, CEO Radio Mirchi Radio said global cities like Colombo and Dubai have more than 30 FM stations and major Indian cities have just seven or eight FM stations. "We need to grow the channels. We have not allowed the medium to grow," he lamented.

Over 100 executives from FM radio stations across the country participated in the deliberations.

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