by Shabdita Shrivastav
It has served the people of the country since May 11, 1940. Significant events covered by the BBC are Indo-Pak war of 1971, Emergency, Operation Blue star, Indira Gandhi’s assassination, the 26/11 terror attacks etc. On March 31, BBC radio, Hindi will broadcast news on Short wave for the last time. The reason behind the shutting down is the budget cuts by the Britain’s foreign office.
My grandmother who stays in an interior village in Uttar Pradesh says, “Jab light chali jati hain toh mai radio sun kay apna maan behla lethi thi. Ab tu bol rahe hai ki yeh bhi band hone wala hai! Baba (Grandfather) bhi Cricket sunte hai radio par jab light chali jate hai ab kya karenge?
For many people in villages and cities BBC Radio has been a very close to their heart. People have lots of memories attached to the Radio. For, Amit Sharma, 48, BBC Radio was the only source of news. He says, “I have grown up listening to BBC radio. We did not have television in our house. It had news telecasts at particular times in the day and that’s where we use to get our daily updates of what is happening around the world. Today also I sometimes tune into BBC for news. It’s really sad to hear that it’s going off- air.” But to some people it just does not make any difference. Soumya Trivedi a SY. BCom student of Dalmia College says, “How does it matter if BBC radio is there or not? Anyways I don’t listen to it”.
For some BBC Radio will always be close to their heart and some will not care about its existence. But now the question is about those thousands of people who will be denied any access to any information once the BBC is silenced!!!