Installing FM radio transmitters atop existing telecom towers and taking satellite television signals to villages through existing optical fibre cable network are two ideas of “synergy” which the Prime Minister’s Office wants the Information & Broadcasting Ministry to explore on priority basis.
The Narendra Modi-government has asked the I&B ministry to explore and devise ways to execute several of its important projects in tandem with other ministries so that duplication in setting up infrastructure can be avoided.
To begin with, the PMO has suggested that I&B should be actively looking at possibilities to install its FM radio transmitters on existing towers erected by the government telecom providers — MTNL and BSNL. “Erecting new towers for FM stations not just entails a huge financial cost, but is also a time-consuming process. We have received a suggestion from the PMO that we should consider putting up our radio transmitters atop the already existing telecom towers so that there is no duplication of infrastructure,” a sources in the I&B ministry said.
Another “idea” which the PMO wants the I&B ministry to explore is using the optical fibre cable network to broadcast signals of television channels. “A project to connect 2.5 lakh panchayats with optical fibre cable is already underway across the country. In fact, a sizeable number of panchayats are already connected by OFC. Since the broadband bandwidth provided by the OFC network is substantial, it may have the potential to carry signals of hundreds of satellite television channels right up to the panchayat level. From there, last-mile connectivity efforts can be made to take these signals to individual homes,” a ministry source explained.