Wednesday, Jan 07, 2004
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Two channels devoted to Hindustani and Carnatic music would also be inaugurated in Bangalore and Lucknow and programmes transmitted through the medium wave in Tamil, Malayalam, Telugu, Gujarati and other languages for a minimum of half hour a day to reach the linguistic audience in the capital.
Receiving cassettes and compact discs of maestros Semmangudi Srinivasa Iyer and M.D. Ramanathan, from violinist Lalgudi G. Jayaraman, Mr. Sarma, who is also the Director-General of AIR, said it prevented the loss of 40,000 tapes by digitising them. Now, the broadcasting organisation planned to become market-friendly too.
With a Rs. 600-crore annual budget, AIR earned only Rs. 100 crores and the Centre gave it Rs. 500 crores, he said. The Government wanted the AIR to market its records without compromising on its role as a public broadcaster. "With 214 radio stations, we have crossed the magical figure of Rs. 100-crore revenue, up from Rs. 70 crores,'' Mr. Sarma said.
There were 30,000 graded artistes and it was difficult to give them the promised four programmes a year for lack of funds. Revenue would be a major thrust area.
The cassettes and CDs released today are part of a series from AIR archives.
Mr. Jayaraman said the AIR should get credit for reaching Carnatic and Hindustani music to every village in the country.
V.A. Magazine, director, Transcription and Programme Exchange Services, AIR, said the first phase of a special project to digitise records was over in 2003 and the entire project would be concluded by March.
N.G. Srinivasa, Deputy Director-General, AIR and Doordarshan, Southern Region, and H.R. Krishnamurthy, Station Director, AIR, Chennai, spoke.
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