The Government of India, through the ministry of information and broadcasting, had decided to open up Phase-III of FM radio broadcasting to private participation with the objective of attracting private agencies to supplement the efforts to extend FM radio coverage in the country. Private FM stations will help to provide programs with local content and relevance, encouraging local talent and generating employment.

{mosimage}FM Phase-III Scheme

The ministry of information and broadcasting issued policy guidelines for FM Phase-III scheme under which 839 FM channels will be available for bidding by private broadcasters in 294 cities/towns including border areas of J&K and North-East for establishing FM broadcast stations.

The first batch of FM Phase-III comprises 135 channels in 69 existing cities of Phase-II. The second batch of FM Phase-III
consists of 266 channels in 92 cities, which includes 227 channels in 69 fresh cities and 39 channels in 23 existing cities.

Government Guidelines for Phase-III

  • As per the government notification, Indian cities have been classified as A+, A, B, C, D and E types based upon the population to be covered by FM radio station.
  • In each category, transmitter power and antenna height above ground level are specified.
  • There could be a maximum of six licensees at category "A" towns, four licensees at category "B" and "C" towns and three licensees at "D" category towns.
  • Wherever Prasar Bharati towers are available, it would be mandatory to use the existing Prasar Bharati tower and available land/building space for antenna erection and building transmitter enclosures by the successful bidders. But this feasibility study should be completed well within three months of issuance of LOI.
  • Wherever the facilities are found feasible, action has to be initiated to set up the common transmission infrastructure (CTI) and share the CTI and the existing tower with other licensees. Common infrastructure has to be provided and integrated by BECIL for private broadcasters.
  • The list of broadcasters under FM Phase-III (Batch-1) is as follows:

  • Hindustan Times Media Ltd.
  • Digital Radio (Mumbai) Broadcasting Ltd.
  • Entertainment Network India Ltd.
  • Music Broadcast Pvt. Ltd.
  • Reliance Broadcast Network Ltd.
  • Rajasthan Patrika Pvt. Ltd.
  • DB Corp. Ltd
  • Abhijit Realtors and Infraventures Pvt. Ltd.
  • Render Live Films and Entertainment Pvt. Ltd.
  • Sarthak Films Pvt. Ltd.
  • Abir Buildcon Pvt. Ltd.
  • Digital Radio (Delhi) Broadcasting Ltd.
  • The Mathrubhimi Printing and Publishing Co. Ltd.
  • Odisha Television Ltd.