Don’t be surprised if you get to hear the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) government’s ‘Badhta Haryana, Badalta Haryana’ slogan in the state-run buses soon.
After FM radio and television, the Khattar government is looking to tom-tom its achievements and policies in the Haryana Roadways buses. The state authorities have initiated the process to introduce audio, video and Wi-Fi based entertainment in 4,000-odd ordinary and luxury buses being run by the state transport department.
The department has decided in principle to install audio-visual entertainment systems in its 3,700 ordinary buses, 182 semi-low floor non air-conditioned buses, 36 luxury long buses operating on long distances routes and 100 low-floor intra-city air-conditioned buses in operation in Gurgaon and Faridabad.
Bids have already been invited for rights to play audio, video and Wi-Fi based entertainment system in all these buses and for issuing advertisements for a period of three years. “The idea is to generate more resources and create awareness about the achievements, policies and programmes of the state government,” a department official told Hindustan Times, requesting anonymity.
The transport authorities, who are hopeful of getting a good response, have fixed time ceilings for playing audio or video magazines in buses, keeping 30 minutes for buses on routes with journey time of less than one hour and one hour for journey time up to two hour and 50% of the journey time on schedules where the travel time exceeds two hours.
The department will allow 12 minutes of commercial advertising during audio and video entertainment of every one complete hour after scheduled department time of the bus and four minutes have been reserved for government advertisement and promotion of schemes. Currently, the state roadways buses have publicity boards on both sides and have to reserve 25% of them for publicity of the government schemes.
The political brass of the state is also said to be keen on the initiative, sensing its huge potential as lakhs of people travel in the state-run buses daily. The state government spends Rs 60-70 crore on an average every year on its publicity. And this, too, jumps whenever any special publicity blitzkrieg is carried out.