Assam's Community Radio: Reaching the unreached

Not a much old concept in India, community radios mostly works for the welfare of the communities near them.

Radio has been a very powerful mode of infotainment since its discovery in the year 1895 by Guglielmo Marconi. From its invention till date, the field of the radio has witnessed many histories.
India was first introduced to the radio in the year 1923 when the Radio Club of Bombay broadcasted their first radio programme. Even though the word "Radio" is extremely popular among people but a very few are aware of the concept of "Community Radio".
The word community radio implies that it caters to the interests of the people within a certain area. Traditionally, the word community means a group of people interacting with other people who live in a common location.
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Image: representative image
The best part of this kind of radio is that everyone has permission to participate or initiate any kind of program anytime. It is open to all. Community radio is built around concepts of access and participation and so the term community may be thought of as referring to a particular geographical area where the radio signals can reach.
A community radio station generally serves its local people with news as well as informative programmes, social and linguistic shows. Community radios generally avoid content that is found on commercial radio.
A community radio station generally serves its local people with some news or some informative programs, social and linguistic shows.
It was in the mid-1990s when the campaign to legitimized community radio began. On February 1, 2004, India's first community radio "Anna FM" was run by Education and Multimedia Research Centre.
By 30th November 2008, there were 38 operational community radios in the country. Under the new community radio policy, any not-for-profit 'legal entity' can apply for the license of community radio.
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Image: representative image
The license permits operation within12 kilometres of radius approximately. The maximum antenna height is 30 metres and the languages used are mostly local. News programs are not permitted to broadcast on community radios in India.
Currently, there are several community radios in Assam which are mostly run by educational institutions. Radio Gyanmalilee is a part of Dibrugarh Universit while Radio Luit belongs to Guwahati University. 
Krishna Kanta Handique State Open University also has one community radio, which broadcasts a variety of programs relating to education, culture and society. 

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