Staff Correspondent

Dakshina Kannada to get its first community radio station

The station will be set up by St. Aloysius College

Programmes will be in Kannada, Tulu, Konkani

and English

MANGALORE: St. Aloysius College is all set to launch the first community radio station in Dakshina Kannada district by February-end or the first week of March.

According to the Head of the Department of Mass Communication and Journalism, Richard Rego, the college is awaiting the signing of the “Grant of Permission Agreement”, which allows the institute to purchase a transmitter. The agreement might be signed this week in Delhi by the Information and Broadcasting Ministry and the college, he said.

Two years ago, encouraged by the success of “Boodinakote Namma Dhwani” and the campus radio station of Anna University, the Information and Broadcasting Ministry took the initiative to popularise the concept of community and campus radio stations.

The college forwarded an application to start a campus radio station. However, it decided to set up a community radio station after the Joint Secretary, Information and Broadcasting Ministry, Zohra Chatterjee, said at a colloquium in Pondicherry in July 2008 that campus radio stations should reach out to the community.

The college decided to launch a 50-watt community radio, with a range of 15 km. The frequency allotted to the college is 107.8 MHz.

Although the Government has allowed the college to broadcast programmes 24 hours a day, the institute initially plans to broadcast for six hours a day.

Medium

Programmes will be in Kannada, Tulu, Konkani and English. “With the student population in mind, we are accommodating English. Plans are afoot to include the Beary language in future,” said Mr. Rego. Mr. Rego is planning to involve the Tulu Academy, the Konkani Academy and Kalangann in the production of programmes.

Asked how community radio would withstand competition from private radio stations in the city, Mr. Rego said there was no competition between private and community radio stations. “People will listen to programmes produced by their fellowmen that address their issues,” he said.

A production and broadcasting studio has been set up on the college campus.

The Centre for Social Concern, a student group, will help the institute bring the radio station and the community together, said Mr. Rego. Bachelor of Social Work and Master of Social Work students are expected to chip in.

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