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AIR goes innovative to keep listeners updated on COVID-19

At the time of cyclone Kathai, the All-India Radio, Vijayawada, Station Director Guttikonda Kondala Rao had received a phone call from the State Real Time Governance Society (RTGS) with a plea to somehow reach out to 35-odd fishermen in Prakasam district who ventured into the sea for a catch in five boats.

“Our news bulletin was over and so we made the announcement about the impending cyclone in the middle of a song on FM Rainbow Krishnaveni. The message reached the fishermen and they immediately returned to their homes,” says Mr. Rao with a satisfactory smile.

That’s the reach of radio, a broadcast medium that can be accessed anywhere, anytime and by anybody. Utilising this engaging and social nature of radio and its powerful connection with its audience, All India Radio, Vijayawada, has been trying to mitigate pain and suffering of people on account of the outbreak of COVID-19 pandemic.

Mr. Rao has been on his toes designing innovative programmes to keep the community up to date with the developments, constantly advising people on the practical steps to be taken to reduce the impact of the virus, besides creating additional slots to squeeze in ‘COVID-19’ news bulletins.