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7 Aug 2019

Plea on hill Radio Station

VIVEK CHHETRI, TT, 7 Aug 2019 :  Darjeeling: MP Raju Bistaand Gorkhaland Territorial Administration chief Anit Thapa have sought a stay on an order to decommission Short Wave (SW) transmitter at the Kurseong radio station..

On July 30, 2019, directorate general, All India Radio,had ordered the shutdown of 21 nonfunctional Short Wave transmitters across the country, including the one in Kurseong. Bista, however, said the Kurseong SW transmission wasn't defunct and sought its upgrade. The board at the AIR Kurseong station. The Kurseong station was established in 1962 and broadcasts programmes mostly in Nepali language. The station has both SW and FM transmissions.“ Removing SW transmitters will affect the telecast from the Kurseong radio station as FM signals will not be so strong. We protest the decision, ” Thapa said in a written statement issued on August 1. Bista said on Monday that he had met Union information and broadcasting minister Prakash Javadekar and apprised him of the significance of the Kurseong radio station and the need to upgrade the existing SW transmitter to Digital Radio Mondiale (DRM) transmitters.

"Kurseong AIR has contributed immensely to the integration of the Nepali-speaking people into the rest of the nation. In our region, people consider AIR Kurseong station as part of our cultural heritage and this station has huge sentimental value and goodwill among the Nepali-speaking communities around the world," said the BJP MP.

Bista said while he supported the need for shutting down the non-functional SW transmitters, "Kurseong SW transmitter was fully functional and was providing service to the listeners as far as Australia".

Bista said given the mountainous terrain of Darjeeling, the reach of an FM transmitter was very limited.

"I have therefore requested Javadekar ji to replace the existing SW transmitter with a new and modern 300 KW DRM transmitter. This way, the AIR Kurseong will be able to reach a much wider audience internationally," said Bista.

A statement from the MP's office stated: "He (minister) assured MP Bista that Kurseong Radio Station would continue to broadcast programmes. The Darjeeling MP has also demanded the Kurseong station be developed into an "earth station.

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