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Saleem Kidwai

BROADCASTING AND THE PEOPLE
By Mehra Masani
1975, 10.25

THE COMMUNICATIONS REVOLUTION
By Narayan Menon
1975, 5.75

VOLUME I NUMBER 2 April - June 1976

The book under review, Broadcasting and the People deals with the complex issues of Indian broadcasting. How far is the growth and performance of radio and television commensurate with the needs of the public in the context of an infant democracy and a develop­ing economy? What are the major ailments which afflict the All India Radio? What should be done to remedy them? To do proper justice to such a subject would need a much bigger volume than the present one. The size of the book, however, has been deliberately kept within present limits in order to retain its popular character. Moreover, basic information has not been neglected. The book is based as much on experience as on study. The philosophy, approach and the role of broadcasting has been discussed in its universal democratic context, making the book of general interest. In doing so, the author has not only drawn upon her own experience but also kept in touch with the current thinking on the subject.         The problems of broadcasting which have given rise to controversy have been stated with objectivity. The author admits that a lot of things are wrong with the A.I.R. She examines the role of the A.I.R. and points out the changes that are needed, to enable it to serve the public more effectively. Nevertheless, the author is less than objective when she says that only one book has appeared on the subject so far (G.C. Awasthy's Broadcasting in India, written, some 15 years ago) and omits altogether K.S. Mullick's Tangled Tapes: The Inside Story of Indian Broadcasting which was published in 1974. In short, the book is a welcome and useful addition to the existing literature on the subject. It makes a critical assessment of the A.1.R.'s structure and operation and offers a concrete plan for improv­ing it. It raises many points which as rightly stated by Dr. S. Gopal in his foreword ‘obviously require consideration and decision when normalcy returns.’ It is hoped the views expressed by the author will help in the formation of new guidelines to A.I.R. and in fulfilling the expectations of the listening public. The second book is a collection of lectures delivered by Dr. Narayana Menon, a former Director General of All India Radio in the 1975 series of Sardar Patel Memorial Lectures. The author descri­bes the lectures as ...


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