Access to and flow of information is critical for human capital development. A well-informed citizenry ismore aware of social, political and economic developments of the country and can subsequently makeinformed choices. In this regard, the Department of Mass Communication will conduct numerousenvironment and social awareness programmes. To help realize the vision of a 'Digital Bangladesh',various mediums like Bangladesh Television and Bangladesh Betarwill be digitized. Mainstreamnewspapers will be preserved in digital form for future reference. In order to ensure better performance inthis sector, officials will undergo capacity building with training abroad.
Expansion of Radio and TelevisionBangladesh Betar
During the 7th Five Year Plan (2016-2020), Bangladesh Betar shall adopt programmes of establishing more F.Mbased radio stations, expansion and replacement of existing old facilities by modern and digital technology.The projects/programmes planned for implementation of noise free listening and quality programmes.Currently Bangladesh Betar coverage of medium wave transmission is 95% and F. M coverage is 65%. Itis expected that this coverage will increase during next 5 years. In enhancing media coverage thegovernment has already given permission to 28 F. M Radio stations to operate throughout the country. 13of these stations are already in operation. Besides, 32 community Radio stations have received permissionfor operation and of those 15 stations are already in operation. Whole country will be covered by community radio network in future.
Bangladesh Television (BTV)
Bangladesh Television, the state owned Television network in Bangladesh has been undergoing through development of infrastructure facilities, expansion and digital/ modernization process. BTVs terrestrial transmission covers 97% geographical area and 98% population of the country. In the 7th Five Year Plan (2016-2020),the Television coverage is expected to reach cent percent area and people of the country. To create facilities to watch and enjoy television broadcast by more people in rural areas, the government has permitted licenses to 41 new television channels to operate. Already 23 private TV channels have been broadcasting their programmes. Permission forgranting license for the rest of the channels is inprocess. To strengthen private sector media coverage, the Ministry of Information hasa policy to grant licenses to F. M Radio stations and private television channels as per existing rules.
Right to information Act
With Vision 2021, the country aspires to an accountable and transparent government system, with the right to information firmly established under the auspices of the Right to Information Act 2009 and the high powered Right to Information Commission. The RTI Act will contribute to further independence of the media, both electronic and print. Since its establishment, the Information Commission has already appointed 20,467 (Government Officials 16,644 and NGOs 3,823) Designated Officers from different ministries/divisions, agencies, field level organizations in districts and NGOs. They are giving feedback about the implementation progress of right to information. The Information Commission has already taken initiative to impart training and formulated a training manual on RTI implementation mechanism, along with the preparation of an electronic data base. The Commission organized awareness campaigns in 64 Districts and 19 Upazilas to further strengthen RTI functioning with the ability to track data at different levels; enhance proactive disclosure, undertake an audience survey and analysis to identify target group strategy and establish partnerships with civil society organizations and media to promote public awareness to fulfill the SDG/Sustainable Development Goals requirements. The Cabinet Divisions Coordination and Reform Unit will facilitate RTI strategic partnerships, promote capacity Building of officials and initiate legislative and policy changes to strengthen RTI activities further.
Objectives for Information Sub-Sector in 7th FYP
* Improve, up-grade, modernize and replace the existing logistic and technical facilities of Bangladesh Betar gradually for its responsible, uninterrupted service and CD quality radio programmes.
* Improve the quality of sound recording by incorporating digital recording and digital archiving
* Establish new studio and improve studio facilities of Bangladesh Betar with full digital equipment
* Minimize breakdown in the Programme due to technical fault.
* Introduction of text message, video clips of artists along with Radio Programme by adopting digital Audio Broadcasting Techniques.
* Introduction of satellite Radio broadcasting in the very near future.
* Expansion of SMS based interactive and request oriented entertaining musical Programme.
* Using social media like Facebook, twitter etc. for greater participation of all classes of people
ADP Allocations for Ministry of information in 7th Plan is (94 Billion BDT) around 121 Million USD (2016 dollar rate as 78 BDT to 1 USD) for 5 years till 2020.