Today's Headlines

Today's Headlines - 24 July 2023

National Broadcasting Day 2023

GS Paper - 2 (Infrastructure)

National Broadcasting Day in India is marked on 23 July as symbolic of the Radio Club of Bombay (established by some businessmen) making the first-ever broadcast in the country in June 1923. The broadcast was followed by the setting up of the Calcutta Radio Club five months later.

About IBC

  • The Indian Broadcasting Company (IBC) came into being on 23 July 1927, although it was soon facing liquidation in less than three years.
  • But it would eventually lead to the birth of a name recognisable to Indians for generations in the form of the All India Radio (AIR). Here is how it happened.

Beginnings of All India Radio

  • The Indian Broadcasting Service had commenced its operations on an experimental basis but soon saw a financial downturn.
  • To revive the radio, BBC producer Lionel Fielden was appointed the first Controller of Broadcasting in August 1935.
  • By January 1936, he gave Delhi its radio station, at Kingsway Camp, ruffling many feathers as he went about in his brusque “must do” style.
  • In the same year Akashvani Mysore, a private radio station, was set up. On 8 June 1936, the Indian State Broadcasting Service (ISBS) became All India Radio.

How film songs were allowed on the radio

  1. The Vividh Bharati Service was then launched in 1957 with popular film music as its main component. But this was not easy to do and had some critics.
  2. In 1952, AIR had imposed a ban on film music and it was in these years that Radio Ceylon and their popular show Binaca Geetmala, hosted by Ameen Sayani, became the saviour for Hindi film music lovers.
  3. With a network of around 260 radio stations, AIR today is accessible to almost the entire population of the country and serves nearly 92% of the total area. A broadcasting giant, it broadcasts in 23 languages and 146 dialects.


India’s first ‘satellite network portal site’

GS Paper - 3 (Space Technology)

The Gujarat government through its Department of Science and Technology (DST) signed a memorandum of understanding with OneWeb India Communications Pvt Ltd for setting up a ‘satellite network portal site’ — a first for India — at Mehsana in Gujarat.

What is the Satellite network portal site?

  • Satellite broadband technology or satellite telephony is not a new concept and with satellite constellations in the low Earth orbit (LEO) gaining traction with StarLinkKuiper and OneWeb among many others, the world is increasingly moving towards relying on LEO satellite communications.
  • LEO satellites operate at an altitude of 500 to 1,200 km, making it ripe for high-speed and low latency — a lower time lag between a user seeking data, and the server sending that data, compared to geostationary Earth orbit positioned satellites.
  • OneWeb has 648 satellites orbiting at 1,000-1,200 km making 13 orbits per day, covering the entire globe.
  • The satellite network portal (SNP) site will serve as a signal and data downlink and uplink terminal or base station on the ground, an intermediary for data transmission through satellite tracking antenna systems.
  • OneWeb India Communications plans to invest up to Rs 100 crore in this project, which would, according to the Gujarat government, create 500 direct and indirect jobs, including jobs requiring telecom, electronics and instrumentation engineers.
  • Apart from civil infrastructure, setting up an SNP like this will also require a slew of regulatory approvals from the Indian National Space Promotion and Authorisation Centre (IN-SPACe) and spectrum allocation from the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI).
  • Earlier, HCIPL and OneWeb, in January 2022, announced a strategic six-year Distribution Partner agreement to provide low Earth orbit (LEO) connectivity services across India, to deliver services to enterprises and government with OneWeb capacity, especially in areas outside the reach of fibre connectivity.

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