23 June, 2016  Media: Newspaper |  Publication: Hindustan Times |  Edition: Delhi |  Page: 13

Govt takes the DTH route, to launch 32 education channels

By Neelam Pandey

"The Union HRD Ministry has approved a scheme allowing 32 direct-to-home (DTH) television channels to telecast content prepared by experts for school and university students from August. Called Swayam Prabha, the scheme was approved by HRD minister Smriti Irani and is likely to be launched by Prime Minister Narendra Modi. The ministry hopes that the telecast will help students in the countryside. A toll-free helpline will also be available to answer queries of students after watching the contents, which are to be uplinked by the Bhaskaracharya Institute of Space Applications and Geo Informatics (BISAG)."

  •  NEW DELHI: The Union HRD Ministry has approved a scheme allowing 32 direct-to-home (DTH) television channels to telecast content prepared by experts for school and university students from August.

Called Swayam Prabha, the scheme was approved by HRD minister Smriti Irani and is likely to be launched by Prime Minister Narendra Modi. The ministry hopes that the telecast will help students in the countryside.

A toll-free helpline will also be available to answer queries of students after watching the contents, which are to be uplinked by the Bhaskaracharya Institute of Space Applications and Geo Informatics (BISAG).

To ensure good quality content, the ministry will engage subject experts who will be paid on an hourly basis. The content will be interactive; will make use of pictures, videos and diagrams to help students understand the concept well.

The ministry is planning to telecast live classroom lectures that can be transmitted from IITs, including Mumbai, Delhi, Kharagpur, and Kanpur.

“Although more than three crore youth are pursuing higher education, the standard of education is not uniform, raising the issue of quality access to knowledge. Youth in the backward pockets of India need a fair deal in accessing high-quality knowledge to confidently enter the job market,” a senior ministry official said.

“This scheme will help them to learn and understand key concepts while sitting at home.”

A total of 32 DTH channels will telecast quality educational programmes throughout the day. “Every day, there will be new content of at least four hours that would be repeated six times a day, allowing students to choose the time of their convenience,” the official said.

Content covering diverse disciplines such as arts, science, commerce, performingarts, social sciences and humanities, engineering, technology, law, medicine and agriculture will be covered.

“To begin with the content will be available in 11 languages and we will make efforts to transcribe videos to enable translation of all text and then dub the voice; in as many Indian languages as possible,” the official said.