Thursday, December 30, 2010


Bento D’Souza sdb
AHMEDNAGAR, DECEMBER 30, 2010: The Bible reminds & reprimands us, “If we do not serve the poor, God will send others to do so.” Seems like a prophecy of hope. Finally after seven years of expectation and hope for me & four years of waiting for approval for a CR license, Ahmednagar has its own community radio station pioneered by Snehalaya Foundation, whose Director is Mr Kulkarni. This community radio station has as its mission to help the poor articulate their voices and serves different strata of society. Many years ago, Fr William Falcao, Rector Don Bosco Savedi, with the approval from the then Provincial Fr Ivo Coelho and his council, had given the green signal for opening a Community Radio station, Radio Bee FM at Don Bosco Savedi. That did not happen, due to the first query from MIB that was unanswered by us, due to change of leadership & management. It was: Why did you start the NGO, Don Bosco, in Bhingar and now why are you in located in Savedi?

Now looking back, Nagar has a community radio station of its own, that will voice the feeling of the people at the grassroots. It took three and half years for Snehalaya to procure the license & deal with all the clearances from MIB Delhi, and seven queries to deal with, showing the resilience of the people of Nagar in achieving what they set their hearts out to do. In the survey taken of eleven hundred families conducted by Premraj Sarda College of Post graduate studies, the students of political science together with their lecturers arrived at the following findings:

1. Many people think that radio is only for entertainment and not for community building and connecting one human being with another neighbor.

2. Only thirteen per cent of the radio listeners are in Ahmednagar city.

3. Ahmednagar city has the maximum number of people who fall below the poverty line.(BPL)

4. Ahmednagar is a multicultural and multi-religious historic city.

5. Although the people are hardworking they are not able to maintain basic needs for their respective families. Facilities & schemes provided by the Government do not reach the grassroots.

6. There is lot of misunderstanding about AIDS/HIV and the people are not aware of their civic and social responsibilities, be it in regards to child labor, child marriage, civil rights and Right to information, etc.

7. Ahmednagar has its own problems but the harmony maintained by Hindus and Muslims is remarkable, the Christians group being the minority.

The installations of the studio has being done by Hemant Babu, of Nomad India Dahanu and setting up of the thirty foot tower to be installed by Global Industries, Pune. The launch will take place, being scheduled on January 13 at 12 noon at Dr Adkar Balkalyan Sankul, Landkar Mala, Balika Ashram Road. Two Padma-Shrees Kumar Ketkar and Baba Anna Hazare and other invited dignitaries are expected to attend.

Welcome to the launch of Radio Nagar 90.4 FM! For at last, it is our own community radio station, for it bears the stamp of our very own voices and identity.

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