Vanita Kohli-Khandekar: Questions about I&B Ministry

In the invective hurled at journalists or the hounding of filmmakers, the big picture on the media and entertainment industry and its potential is completely lost

Vanita Kohli-Khandekar  August 4, 2015

Last week the auctioning of licences in the third phase of FM radio’s expansion began, four years after the policy was announced. It is the first major ‘initiative’ from the Ministry of Information and Broadcas-ting after digitisation was mandated in 2011. That too is now stuck.

Talk to the CEOs of India’s top film, TV, cable or radio firms and you hear what you heard three years ago – nothing is moving. There is no talk of lobbying for long-term growth triggers – such as rationalising entertainment tax. Instead broadcasters and media firms are saying, can we at least do business as usual?

This, then, is a good time to ask if we really need a ministry of information and broadcasting?

Might that function not be best served by an independent-of-the-government body – that has overall charge of print, TV, film, radio, digital – à la UK’s Ofcom with a difference. A body can take a big picture look at….

Govt policy and Media & Entertainment Industry

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