The Ministry of Information and Broadcasting (MIB) on Thursday issued an Information Memorandum (IM) regarding the e-auction of 135 private FM radio channels in 69 cities across India.
The Ministry issued the Information Memorandum in continuation to the Centre’s approval on January 16 for the conduct of FM Phase-III auctions for the channels and migration (renewal) of Private FM Radio licences from Phase-II to Phase-III.
The issuance of the Information Memorandum is part of the process of FM Phase-III policy for the expansion of FM radio broadcasting through private agencies. It aims at attracting agencies to supplement and complement the efforts of All India Radio by operationalizing radio stations that provide programmes with local content and relevance, improving the quality of fidelity in reception and generation, encouraging local talent and generating employment.
The memorandum comprises rules and timetable applicable to the auction and is aimed at informing the prospective bidders about the steps they need to follow in order to pre-qualify and take part in the auction.
The memorandum is for information purpose only and has no binding force. It outlines the Government’s expectations in relation to the proposed auction. All information contained in it is subject to modification.
The Ministry has issued the memorandum to encourage the potential new entrants in the broadcasting sector, as well as the existing operators, to take an informed decision while participating in the auction.
The memorandum is not intended to form any part of the basis of any investment. Also, neither does it constitute an offer or invitation to participate in the auctions, nor does it constitute the basis of any contract that might be concluded in relation to the auction. It has been put in public domain to merely supplement and update Phase-III Policy guidelines and to acquaint the prospective bidders with the design of ascending e-auction.
The ministry has also informed that the recipients of the memorandum, intending to participate in the auction, should note that MIB would separately issue a notice inviting applications for participation in the auction, which would be definitive and take precedence.