Prime Minister Narendra Modi, on Friday, inaugurated 91 new FM Transmitters, which is expected to give a further boost to radio connectivity in the country. This will strengthen FM radio connectivity in 85 districts across 18 States and 2 Union Territories and will benefit aspirational districts and border areas

Addressing a virtual gathering, the Prime Minister marks a significant step in the expansion of FM services by All India Radio and will revolutionise the radio industry.. He said the districts covered under the new 91 FM transmitters are aspirational districts and blocks and will also greatly benefit the North East region.

He said that the new FM transmitters will play a key role in the dissemination of information in a timely manner, community building efforts, relaying weather updates related to agricultural practices, information on food and vegetable prices for farmers, and assisting the entire community during times of a natural calamity, among others. “Those who were considered to be distant will now get a chance to connect at a greater level”, Modi said. With this expansion of AIR’s FM service, an additional 2 crore people will now be covered, a statement added.

Also read: De facto news ban on FM, community radio unjustified

The Prime Minister emphasised that the tech revolution taking place in the country in the past few years has helped radio and especially FM radio emerge in a new form. He added the government is continuously working for the democratisation of technology. “It is important that no Indian should feel scarcity of opportunity if India has to rise up to its full potential”, he said adding that making modern technology accessible and affordable is key.

Modi pointed out that radio has come to the fore in innovative ways through podcasts and online FM. “Digital India has not only given new listeners to the radio but a new thought process as well”, the added. He stated that the services of DD free dish, the largest DTH platform in the country, are being provided to 4.3 crore homes “

The States and UTs covered under this expansion include Bihar, Jharkhand, Odisha, West Bengal, Assam, Meghalaya, Nagaland, Haryana, Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Andhra Pradesh, Kerala, Telangana, Chhattisgarh, Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Ladakh, and Andaman & Nicobar Islands. It will result in the expansion of coverage in about 35,000 sq km area.