Pics: Spoorthi Ullal
Daijiworld Media Network – Mangaluru (DV)
Mangaluru, Apr 15: “The new policy of Prasar Bharati would affect the regional programmes of Akashvani and also the reduction of local content is a threat to the employment of announcers and other technical staff,” said Manohar Kadri, announcer at All India Radio (AIR) Mangalore.
Speaking at the press club here on Thursday, April 15, he said, “The new policy was planned to be introduced in Kerala, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu and Andhra Pradesh, but other states opposed it and hence, it was dropped."
"AIR has a legacy of preserving the culture and tradition for the past 90 years. People in rural areas are associated with AIR even now. AIR has been broadcasting programmes on the achievement and policies of the central government. We are proud to get associated with the unique programme 'Mann Ki Baat' of our beloved Prime Minister Narendra Modi,” he said.
Aruna S Nayak, representing the staff of AIR Mangalore, said, "AIR Mangalore has been broadcasting programmes since 1976. Many eminent personalities of this area received opportunities to show their talent at this station. Yuvavani, Balavrinda, Vanithavani, Kissanvani and Yakshagana are very popular among the local mass. AIR Mangalore is broadcasting programmes not only in Kannada but also in local languages like Tulu and Konkani. In fact, AIR was the only medium for Tulu and Konkani talents till the year 2000."
“It is learnt that many of the programmes will be relayed from the station in the capital in the near future. This will reduce the opportunity for the local talents for which this station is constituted. The transmission is being run by casual announcers for four years. The announcers, who are the backbone of the transmission, will be sacked with this change. Several staff totally depend on AIR Mangalore for their daily bread."
"The reduction in local content will not only harm us but also cause a great loss in disseminating the ideas of the government. The people's representatives and government officials will not be able to give information to the general public. It will also deny opportunities to the young talents of this area," she added.
“The Prime Minister had interacted with all the announcers of India to work hard on a virtual meeting on March 29, 2020, after the outbreak of the pandemic. Kindly recall that the information and broadcasting minister Prakash Javadekar had openly come out on AIR on March 30, 2020, saying that this is the time that Akashvani should work with full potential. We, ignoring the personal difficulties, have worked shouldering the responsibilities of the government in reaching the public with the right information, defeating the fake media," Aruna said.
“Hence, we humbly request the media to bring the matter to the knowledge of minister Prakash Javadekar and ensure that the local AIR station keeps transmitting more and more local content as well as provide opportunities for the announcers to continue serving a national broadcaster," she said.
“We, the announcers, are the bridge between the Government of India and listeners. We get regular feedback from the listeners. In the name of cost-cutting, employees are being removed from AIR. In this regard, we have filed a memorandum to the MLA,” she said.
Announcer Gayatri said that this move by the Prasar Bharati would affect multilingual stations like Mangaluru. “In a week, AIR Mangalore has aired Tulu programmes for over seven hours. Shutting down of regional stations would affect regional languages Tulu and Konkani,” she said.
Praveen Amembala and Rama Rao of Radio Listeners Association also shared their views at the press meet.