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FM E-Auctions in the Offing

The auction of 683 FM channels in 236 cities in subsequent batches has been approved. With the rollout of the third batch auctions a large number of those cities across the country will be benefitted where there are no private FM radio channels, which include several cities in border areas of Jammu and Kashmir and North-East states, where the population is less than one lakh. This batch of auction will also cover cities in districts, which are badly affected by left wing extremism. It will provide FM radio coverage to new cities besides better content choice to the listeners. With the complete rollout of FM Phase-III auctions, all the 29 states and six out of the seven union territories (except Dadra and Nagar Haveli) will be covered by private FM radio broadcasting. This is also likely to generate direct and indirect employment to more than 10,000 persons on a pan India basis. These auctions are estimated to yield a revenue more than `1100 crore. In order to ensure complete transparency, the simultaneous multiple round ascending (SMRA) process is being adopted, which is the same model being used by Department of Telecommunications for its spectrum auctions since 2010.

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