Radio Fair sets the correct tune

Event aims to promote the medium and celebrate its significance

By Namita Panda in Bhubaneshwar
  • Published 14.02.15
Akshay Kumar Patnaik with his radio set collection at the Radio Fair in Bhubaneswar. Picture by Ashwinee Pati

Bhubaneswar, Feb. 13: A visit to the golden days of transistors and a chance to meet popular hosts of radio shows - the two-day Radio Fair, hosted at Bhanja Kala Mandap, had plenty to offer to the visitors.

The event aims to celebrating the significance of radio on the occasion of World Radio Day.

Akshay Kumar Patnaik from Bolagarh in Khurda showcased a collection of old radio sets, better known as transistors, including some that are almost 90 years old.

From wooden boxes with controlling knobs to heavy metal transistors that were once distributed by the state government to the people in towns and villages to get the latest news Patnaik had them all.

"With the help of my friends, I have collected a large number of mechanical articles and made a museum named Ghanshyam Pindika. The museum is 40 years old. We have collected the radio sets from all over the country," said Patnaik.

Another highlight of the event was a team of representatives from the Iran Hindi Radio. Breaking the common notion that television and the Internet have led to the decline radio among people, the team was upbeat about its popularity.

"We get thousands of letters at our Indian headquarters. People listen to us on short wave radios and the Internet. There is a mobile app that helps listeners tune in to our station," said Chunilal Kaiwart, a member of the radio channel.

At present, people of the state are tuning in to various community radio channels such as Konark's community radio Radio Namaskaar, Radio Kisaan from Balipatna in Puri, Radio Muskan from Jagatsinghpur, and students' radio channel at the Siksha O Anusadhan University in Bhubaneswar and Ravenshaw University in Cuttack. Members of these channels set up kiosks at the fair.

All India Radio and many private channels were also present. FM channels also set up kiosks at the event where radio jockeys interacted with the visitors.

"I met my favourite morning show host. I think FM channels are great entertainment when you are driving. There should be more options for Bhubaneswar listeners," said Pabitra Mohanty, a corporate employee.

"We wish to promote radio as a form of entertainment. It was great to see such a huge following for radio shows even today," said Subrat Pati, one of the organisers of the fair.