Monday, Jun 16, 2003
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By Our Staff Reporter
The `fresh radio stations' have been apparently launched to target people along the LoC. They broadcast programmes focussed on militant operations in the State, furnishing details of militant operations and boosting the image and success of the militants against the security forces.
The programmes are mostly in the local dialect, such as Gojri and Pahari, which are spoken in this part of Jammu region.
Experts say the mobile stations are located within four or five kilometres of the LoC in various parts of Pakistan occupied Kashmir. Since the militancy started here, the authorities have been requesting the Centre to come out with a detailed strategy to counter the propaganda. Accordingly, a Rs. 430-crore package was announced by the former Information and Broadcasting Minister, Sushma Swaraj, in October 2001. The main aim of the package was to counter the propaganda from the other side and it was described as major component of the anti-terror strategy of the Centre for the region. But even at that time, the authorities here had pressed hard for increasing the funds to the station office at Jammu as a number of transmitters needed to be built and more funds were needed. A senior All India Radio officer said: "For effective countering propaganda, there is a need for monitoring programmes for which there are no equipment. The air waves are being beamed by the short-wave transmitters from across the border and they are highly powerful within some radius."
The much-publicised Kashir channel has failed to meet the needs of the people of the border belt of the State as there are less programmes in languages spoken in border areas and the programmes are inferior in quality.
Also, programmes do not even reach the border belt due to poor infrastructure. The old transmitters need immediate repair.
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