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Saturday, August 15, 2009

Radio Pakistan\'s New Concept Of Broadcasting. (1987-14)

Department with one 5 kW MW transmitter at Lahore and another 10 kW MW transmitter at Peshawar which could cover only 4. 3 per cent of the area and 6. 7 per cent of the population of the country. There were no arrangements for a national service or central newscast. The External Services could only be started in 1949 when a 50 kW SW transmitter was installed at Karachi. In December, 1972 Radio Pakistan was converted into a statutory corporation. At that time there were 7 Radio Stations putting out daily 137 hours of programmes including 71 news bulletins with a radiating power of 756 kW which covered 38 per cent of area and 77 per cent of the population on medium-wave. The daily duration of the External Services in 15 languages directed to 64 countries was 16 hours. Now there are 16 Radio Stations putting across 270 hours of programmes daily in the Home Service in 21 languages. News is broadcast every hour on the air so that the total number of news bulletins in a day comes to 103 for a total duration of 601 minutes daily. The World Service of twelve and a half hours daily caters to the requirements of Pakistanis living abroad particularly in South East Asia, Middle East, UK and Western Europe. The External Services are on the air for about 18 hours everyday in 15 lanugages to project Pakistan to the outside world and to create a better appreciation for its problems, policies and achievements and to create goodwill for the country. The radiating of power of individual stations ranges from 250 Kilowatts to 1000 Kilowatts so that the medium-wave coverage area-wise and population-wise is 75 per cent and 95 per cent respectively. Among the allied departments worth-mentioning are the Central Productions, Equipment Production Unit and Pakistan Broad-casting Academy. The Central Productions is concerned with the production of quality programmes and is the biggest custodian in the country of the national archives in the medium of sound containing over 15, 000 tapes and more than 2, 500 manuscripts of talks/plays and features relating to different aspects of our national life. The Equipment Production Unit has taken upon itself the responsibility of fabricating and manufacturing some of the electronic equipment and components of its own thereby reducing reliance on foreign sources and saving in foreign exchange expenses. Pakistan Broadcasting Academy which provides training to programme, news and technical personnel at different levels is regarded to be one of the best training in institutions in this part of the world and is used as Regional Training Centre by the Asia-Pacific Institute for Broadcasting Development (AIBD).
When sound broadcasting was introduced in South Asia in the thirties the broadcasts were formal and impersonal meant for an elitist audience. After independence Radio Pakistan developed its own identity but the pattern and cadence of its broadcasts remained the same. On 1. 1 . 1987 Radio Pakistan brought about a major change in its communication strategy and programme presentation to bring them in line with the needs of the time. The new approach is scientific, progressive, investigative, life-related, motivational with focus on current affairs. It is, area-specific, field-oriented> result and target-related developmental broad-casting. The 270 hours of daily transmission have been divided into one hour chunks, each chunk being planned, produced and presented by one producer with the help of a compare. The comparing is direct, to-the-point and the communication is sincere and strictly one to one. Under the new concept new audiences have been added besides those already being looked after such as children, students, women, youth, farmers, industrial labour and the rural population. The new audiences include hospital patients, consumers, hobbyists, truck drivers, night workers, physically handicapped etc.
The new concept of broadcasting by the grace of God has clicked and by and large radio programmes have been well-received by the listeners. This would be amply clear from the large number of press reports, reviews, write-ups and articles appearing in the national and regional languages newspapers and a survey conducted by a prestigious Research Organization of Pakistan. This is also borne out by the increase in the number of letters received at different Radio Stations which has gone up by three to four times the number received before the introduction of the new broadcasting concept.
Contributed by Pakistan Broadcasting Corporation
To commemorate Radio Pakistan\'s new concept of Broadcasting, Pakistan Post Office is issuing a stamp of 80 Paisa denomination on December31, 1987.