The Information and Broadcasting ministry has framed a New Print Media Advertisement Policy as per which a new “marking system” has been introduced to incentivise newspapers which have better professional standing and get their certification verified.
According to an official statement released today, the new New Print Media Advertisement Policy for Directorate of Advertising and Visual Publicity (DAVP) aims to promote transparency and accountability in issuing of ads.
“For the first time the policy introduces a New Marking System for newspapers to incentivize Newspapers who have better professional standing and get their circulation verified by Audit Bureau of Circulations (ABC) or Registrar of Newspapers for India (RNI),” the statement said.
This will also ensure transparency and accountability in the release of advertisements by DAVP, it added.
The marking system is based on six objective criteria with different marks each of them.
These include – Circulation certified by ABC/RNI (25 marks), EPF subscription for employees (20 marks), number of pages (20 marks), subscription to wire services of UNI/PTI/Hindustan Samachar (15 marks), own printing press (10 marks), annual subscription payment to PCI (10 marks).
Advertisements shall be released by DAVP to Newspapers based on marks obtained by each newspaper, the statement said.
The policy framework includes circulation verification for empanelment of Newspapers and Journals with DAVP.
The procedure involves certification by RNI or ABC if circulation exceeds 45,000 copies per publishing day and for circulation up to 45,000 copies per publishing day certificate from Cost or Chartered Accountant, Statutory Auditor Certificate or ABC is mandated, the statement said.
The policy states that RNI circulation certificate shall be valid for a period of two years from the date of issue and in case of ABC, the current certificate shall be used for circulation certificate.
Director General of DAVP reserves the right to have figures of circulation checked through RNI or its representative.
The policy framework provides a premium for prominent placing of ads in newspapers and journals whose circulation is certified by ABC or RNI.
DAVP would pay a premium of 50 per cent above DAVP rates for colour or black and white for front page, 20 per cent premium to third page, 10 per cent premium to fifth page and 30 per cent premium for back page to only those newspapers whose circulation is certified by ABC or RNI, the statement said.
The policy also incentivize big category newspapers which are willing to publish the advertisements of Educational Institutions at DAVP rates by giving additional business of 50 per cent in volume terms as compared to those which are not willing to accept, the statement addded.
The policy has classified Newspaper and Journals into three categories – Small (less than 25,000 copies per publishing day), Medium (25,001-75,000 copies) and Big (over 75,000 copies per publishing day).
The policy also mentions relaxation in empanelment procedure to provide special encouragement for Regional language or dialects, small and medium newspapers, mass circulated newspapers (circulation of over 1 lakh), newspapers in North Eastern states, Jammu & Kashmir and Andaman & Nicobar Islands.
To promote equity based regional outreach, the policy emphasizes that the budget for all India release of advertisements shall be divided among states based on total circulation of newspapers in each State or Language.
The policy emphasizes that DAVP shall make efforts to release more social messages and related advertisements which are not date specific to periodicals.
The policy mentions that PSUs and Autonomous bodies may issue the advertisements directly at DAVP rates to newspapers empanelled with DAVP.
However, they all have to follow the criteria laid down by DAVP for release of all classified and display advertisements in different categories of newspapers.
The policy directs all clients of DAVP to issue Letter of Authority, Cheque, DD, NEFT, RTGS up to 80 per cent of the actual expenditure in the previous year within the first month of the new financial year and clear all the remaining payments before February 28th of the financial year.
Alternatively, the client Ministries may provide 85 per cent advance payments of the estimated expenditure of the advertisements.
For Multiple editions of a newspaper, as per the PRB Act whenever copies of one edition of a newspaper are printed from more than one centre and if the content is different then they would be treated as different editions, it said.
Each edition of a newspaper is required to have a separate RNI registration number, as per the policy.
According to the official statement, the policy guidelines mention that if a newspaper for sake of convenience is printing its copies in more than one printing press without adding any additional content, DAVP may take the circulations of such printing centres into consideration for giving rate of that edition.
For payment and adjustment of bills, the policy framework mandates that DAVP will release payment of advertisement bills in the name of newspaper or company account directly through ECS or NEFT.
Also, it is mentioned that “newspaper will publish DAVP advertisement only on receipt of the relevant Release Order by DAVP,” the statement said.
All Release order issued can be accessed electronically at DAVP website.
The policy stipulates the rate structure for payment against advertisements released by DAVP will be as per recommendations of the Rate Structure Committee.
DAVP is the nodal agency of the Government of India for advertising on behalf of various Ministries/Departments/PSUs/ Autonomous organizations which are funded by the Government.