Tuesday, April 20, 2010
What is an Indian FM channel doing in Karachi???!!
yes you read it right -- last night while driving to do an errand i turned on the radio and came across an FM channel where the host was talking in what appeared to be Gujarati -- initially i thought it was perhaps a new channel in gujarati -- apna karachi 107 FM has a segment in Gujarati i believe as well so perhaps someone took the initiative to cater to karachi's sizeable gujarati-speaking population. However, this morning again, as I was checking various FM channels, I came across the same one -- 93.5 FM -- with a man and a woman both talking in a mixture of what seemed to be urdu, English and Gujarati -- the songs were all indian but that doesnt necessarily mean that the channel would be indian because many pakistani FM channels also air Indian songs -- but then came an ad for Bisleri which is India's leading mineral water provider -- Bisleri is not sold in Pakistan so the ad couldnt be for Karachi -- and then it made sense -- this was clearly an FM channel coming from the other side that the border -- Sindh borders Gujarat and hence the Gujarati-speaking RJs -- then i did some googling and found that Ahmedabad has a channel whose frequency is FM 93.5 -- the distance between Ahmedabad and Karachi (as the crow flies) is around 360 miles -- Rajkot, also in Gujarat state, has a channel whose frequency is also 93.5 FM and it is closer to the Pakistan border -- but the distance between Karachi and Rajkot (which adjacent Jamnagar and not too far from the Rann of Kutch) would be still a formidable 230 miles or so -- formidable for FM radio waves to travel -- so does India have boosters near the border -- because till a few days ago this FM channel wasnt available in Karachi -- is this an accident or deliberate -- remember the Azm-e-Nau exercise is going on right now - very close to the border with Rajasthan in Khairpur Tamewali (which is in the Cholistan desert) -- while i dont mind another channel to listen to, and one with a decidedly different sound, i wonder what PEMRA has to say about this -- does remind me just how (physically) close we are to India