To enable students across the country hear lectures as well as interact with top academicians on television, the Ministry of Human Resource & Development (HRD) and public broadcaster Prasar Bharati have joined hands to launch 50 educational channels by 01 May next year, 2014.
As revealed by an HRD official, this educational project has no parallel across the world, and there’s plan to increase the number of channels under this project from 50 to 1,000. These educational channels will have the potential to be viewed on 167 million TV sets and to benefit a population of more than 67 per cent in the country.
As per an agreement signed by Prasar Bharati CEO, Jawhar Sircar, and the HRD secretary, Ashok Thakur, on 19 December, the public broadcaster will provide expertise in carrying the channels on a DTH platform, and the ministry will be focusing on providing Programs Content.
The channels will run structured programmes the content of which will originate from institutions like IITs, IGNOU, State Open Universities, Central Universities, NITs. Each channel shall deliver mostly live telecasts, 9 hours a day, which will be repeated in the next 15 hours, HRD officials said.
The channels will broadcast programs for almost all subjects being taught in universities and colleges and the contents will be based on curriculum. The channels would be availed through a Set Top Box, and would also be available on the internet with a Doordarshan logo.
The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs in 2009 had approved 'National Mission on Education through Information and Communication Technology' or NME-ICT under which around 1000 educational channels would have to be launched, said the official.
Prasar Bharati CEO said that the broadcaster was agreed to join hands with ministries, departments and organisations for programmes which come under the domain of public service broadcasting. He said further that the Prasar Bharati was not looking for any profits by launching these channels but expected that the DTH platform would help broaden its reach.