Legal entities can start community radio, says Trai
Religious bodies engaged in socio-economic activities and publicly-funded organisations would also not be barred, provided management/control is not in government hands, Trai has said.
The government asked Trai to review the community radio policy a few months ago, as only one station (Anna University) has been set up so far. The community radio scheme was opened up almost two years ago. Restriction on news, lengthy licensing process and ban on ads were among the problems cited by the potential players in community radio.
Although financial condition of the application is not a criterion, the licence could be revoked for those stations which are not in operation for three months or more. Also, ownership of the stations should be with Indians, Trai believes.
Trai has suggested a reduction in bank guarantee from Rs 50,000 to Rs 25,000. “The requirement of furnishing a bank guarantee should not be done away with to prevent frivolous applicants from applying... However, it should not be an amount that acts as a deterrent for genuine applicants also.”
The Authority has stressed that
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