Plan to outsource ‘prime time’ slots to private producers at DD National, says Rathore
In an exclusive interview to Millennium Post, Minister of State for Information and Broadcasting Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore said that it would be a good idea to outsource certain segments on DD National to private producers. “One of the key sections for DD is also entertainment and the largest outreach of any channel in this area is that of DD National. The glorious days at DD National were between 2003-2005 when the Mahabharata and other popular serials were aired. We will go back to making those slots available to private production houses. We plan to outsource our platform to the best producers. Discussions are in the final stages at Prasar Bharti.”
Will there be a bidding process to select the producers for this segment on the channel? “The Prasar Bharti is working on the modalities. It has to be an open and transparent process of selection. These will be informative shows aired on prime time,” explained the minister.
Rathore also stressed on the ‘make-over’ of DD News as well. “In the television segment we have Doordarshan. In fact DD News which is much better in content, we plan to further make it better by bringing in new technology and digitising studios. So the experience for the consumer is going to be much better as well. In fact now we have DD news on mobile as well, available both on Android and Apple phones. So, you can listen to DD News while on the move.”
Regarding the outreach of FM Radio in India, and ‘FMisation of India’ (entire country being covered by FM), he said, “FM Radio is a popular medium and we focusing on FMisation of the entire country. Today the FM penetration in India is 45 per cent. In another two to two-and-a-half years we will cover nearly 65 per cent of India. Every city with one lakh population will now have three FM radio stations of their own. That will give a big push to FMising the entire country.”
Rathore also said the Ministry is focusing on improving the Regional News Units (RNU)s across India. “We are also improving the RNUs, starting with Lucknow, Bangalore and other cities. We have identified few of our RNUs and are focusing on making them better.” He also stated that Field Publicity is another thrust area of the Ministry.