(MENAFN - The Peninsula) By Sidi Mohamed | The Peninsula
Minister of Culture and Sports H E Salah bin Ghanem Al Ali yesterday launched four new private radio stations -- 98.6 FM, 91.7 FM, 106.3 FM and 89.6 FM. Two stations will be airing programmes in Malayalam and the other two in Hindi. Some more radio channels for other communities are in the offing, said the Minister.
The four stations will be broadcast 24 hours and will enrich the cultural scene in the country and will provide entertainment, social, health programs and will also cover the local events and activities.
'Soon more radio stations will get licence to serve another communities like the Filipino community among others and the ministry received a huge number of licence applications. The Ministry supports private sector in this field to support freedom of expression, said the Minister while talking to media after inaugurating four radio channels at the ministry headquarters.
The event was attended by Indian and Bangladeshi ambassadors, a number of Ministry officials and the licence holders of the four radio channels.
On licence, the Minister said that the criteria were of international standards like not to incite hatred, no contempt of religions and not to incite racism. 'Many radio stations are asking for licences and the problem now is that the current radio waves are not enough and will be expanded by next year, said the Minister.
For her part, Sheikhah Najla Al Thani, Director of Broadcasting Licensing Department at the Ministry, said that these private four radio channels will contribute to enhancing different cultures and will meet the community needs by providing programs in their mother languages. It also will help these communities to know more Qatari news, culture and tradition which will help them to incorporate more in the local society, she added.
'This initiative will increase the diversity of investment opportunities for the investors and will also benefit these communities. The ministry looks forward to launch of different radio channels broadcasts in other languages such as English, French, Spanish and Filipino.
Indian Ambassador to Qatar, P Kumaran, said that the new radio channels will help people understand each other. He said that radio, as a powerful medium, would also help embassy to communicate with workers.
On behalf of the licence holders of the four radio channels, K C Abdul Latheef said that it is a matter of great privilege and honour to attend this gracious ceremony that witnesses the launch of four private radio channels for the first time in Qatar two of them in Hindi and two in Malayalam, which is spoken in the southern Indian state of Kerala. 'Indo-Arab relations are rooted in the past, and mutual exchanges in various fields have played a great role in cementing ties.