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AIR revenue up at Rs455 crore in 2016-17

LiveMint logoLiveMint 24-05-2017 Harveen Ahluwalia

New Delhi: State-owned broadcaster All India Radio (AIR) recorded a revenue of Rs455 crore in the year ended 31 March, surpassing its annual target of Rs450 crore.

All India Radio, owned by public broadcaster Prasar Bharati, had reported a revenue of Rs447 crore in 2015-16.

The broadcaster earned about Rs45 crore in advertising revenue from its FM channels in 2016-17, up from Rs43 crore last year. AIR currently operates a total of 420 radio stations across the country.

AIR’s network includes FM channels (FM Gold and FM Rainbow), local radio stations, Vividh Bharati stations and five community radio stations. AIR also extends operations to over 108 countries.

“Both AIR and Doordarshan have achieved their targets this year. The focus this year is on expanding digital radio and transforming analog transmitters into digital. AIR has received a lot of popularity because of Mann Ki Baat as well,” said an AlR official, who did not wish to be identified.

Prasar Bharati runs both Doordarshan and All India Radio. For the year 2016-17, Doordarshan had recorded a net revenue of Rs827 crore, Rs27 crore higher than its annual target of Rs800 crore.

Mann Ki Baat is a monthly radio address given by Prime Minister Narendra Modi which is aired across all AIR stations. The programme has also been visually adapted for telecast on Doordarshan channels. So far, AIR has aired 31 episodes of Mann Ki Baat.

Recently, the government also announced a feedback program called Jan Ki Baat, where PM Modi will invite views and opinions from the people on various government schemes. This will be a part of the 20-day celebration marking three years of PM Modi-led National Democratic Alliance (NDA) government at the Centre, starting 26 May.

Meanwhile, AIR has also lined up a series of programmes, including musicals, documentaries and discussions highlighting the achievements of the government in a bid to celebrate its three-year anniversary.

Similarly, Doordarshan has also introduced a two-month-long programming blitz ranging from debates (on government schemes) to short films and online discussions.

Going forward, AIR plans to extend the coverage of its FM channels to about 65% of India’s population. Currently, AIR FM operations cover 24.94% of the area and 36.81% of the population. AIR, which started as the Indian State Broadcasting Service, will complete 81 years of operations in June.

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