After his popular monthly radio talk Mann ki Baat, PM Narendra Modi's mission to re-ignite state-run All India Radio has seized upon another milestone. AIR has bagged exclusive global commentary rights for 17 key ICC World Cup matches on the back of a strong push from the government.
The government was keen on getting exclusive global radio commentary rights for not just crucial matches involving the Indian side but also those featuring some neighouring countries for the forthcoming ICC Cricket World Cup-2015 Tournament in Australia and New Zealand from Feb 15 to March 29. These were secured for an undisclosed price.
The broadcaster is now the process of booking top cricketers for the ball-by-ball commentary, for 17 crucial 2015 World Cup matches, which will be relayed across the country over 66 stations.
Last month, AIR had gone global with PM Modi's radio chat with President Obama, which was picked up by a few global radio networks.
In a country where radio still has a wider reach than television and cricket is a national pastime, audiences across all states will get live fulltime commentary of a carefully selected matches, including those that will be played from quarter-finals stage onwards.
"All India Radio, Delhi, will broadcast hourly updates of the 17 matches on its FM Rainbow Channel and it will be relayed by all other AIR FM Rainbow Channels, thus ensuring unique dissemination," an official said, requesting anonymity.
The list of the 17 matches will be soon available on AIR website along with the timings, the official said.