Industry Leaders, Interviews, Special Reports

HOT 100 – Radio Broadcasters – Jawhar Sircar, CEO, Prasar Bharti

As the Goliath of the industry, All India Radio (AIR) is often perceived as a channel for public information than a for-profit broadcasting company. This sentiment is deeply …


As the Goliath of the industry, All India Radio (AIR) is often perceived as a channel for public information than a for-profit broadcasting company. This sentiment is deeply embedded not just externally, but also within the organization, often working against it.

Despite this, the outspoken Jawhar Sircar, CEO of Prasar Bharti, which oversees AIR, (he had once said “If you want news, watch DD News, if you want views, you can go to other channels”) managed to get the national broadcaster to use INR 137 crore of its provisional budgetary allocation during 2015-16.

As part of this upgradation, 23 AIR channels were provided on Doordarshan’s direct-to-home Freedish platform, thereby expanding its reach. Last year, AIR’s popular Vividh Bharati service was also put on the FM mode in the four metro cities. This aside, 13 channels were provided on AIR’s internet platform as well as apps for iOS/Android/ Windows-based mobile phones.

Earlier this year, AIR also authorised releaseMyAd as its only online agency to accept and process radio advertisement bookings for its network of stations. This was part of its ambitious web-enabled initiative to adequately utilise last minute inventory that otherwise went underutilized.

These are significant landmarks because for an entity often scoffed for moving at sluggish pace, the gargantuan entity has caught up with the digitisation game fairly quickly. This proves that when the will is strong, even giants can move at swift speed.

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