SIALKOT - Federal Minister for Information and Broadcasting Dr Firdous Ashiq Awan has expressed dismay over performance of Radio Pakistan FM-101 Sialkot Station and directed the Pakistan Broadcasting Corporation (PBC) to chalk out effective strategy to pull out FM Radio Station of the financial crisis and make it stands on its feet financially.

She was presiding over a meeting of the senior PBC officials held at Radio FM-101 Sialkot Station here the other evening. Pakistan Broadcasting Corporation (PBC) Director General Murtaza Solangi was also present on the occasion.

On the occasion, the PBC officials told the information minister that the FM-101 Sialkot radio Station had been suffering severe financial crisis since its establishment four years ago. They said that the monthly expenditures of the radio station were Rs1 million including the salaries of the staff and rent of this building. While, the monthly income of the FM radio station was only Rs10,000. They said that the radio station had to suffer a loss of Rs0.9 million per month. They said that the radio station management had been appeared unable to make effective efforts or evolve a commercial marketing strategy to overcome the crisis over past four years.

Later, talking to the media, Dr Firdous Ashiq Awan said that the PBC Sialkot officials had been directed to steer the FM-101 Sialkot radio station out of financial crisis on war footings by taking tangible steps to explore and capture new avenues for generating revenue in Sialkot region. She disclosed that the PBC would establish FM-93 Sialkot radio station which would start functioning from March 23, 2012. She said that the objective of the FM-93 radio station was to provide opportunity to local youth to exhibit their talent, promote industrial and export culture of Sialkot across the country.

The Federal Minister claimed that President Asif Zardari had approved the project to provide entertainment facilities to people of the area. The new radio station, she said, would also on air the current affairs and news programmes to keep locals abreast with new developments.

The information minister pointed out that the government was utilizing all available resources to making Radio Pakistan a profitable institute, adding that steps had already been taken for bringing the Radio Pakistan out of problems. She urged workers and staff of Radio Pakistan to fulfil their responsibilities with devotion, adding they should focus attention on highlighting soft image of Pakistan through their programmes. On the occasion, PBC DG Murtaza Solangi told the newsmen that Rs30 million would be spent on establishment of FM-93 radio station in Sialkot. Later, expressing her views in live programme of FM-101 Sialkot, Dr Firdous said the government was committed to resolving energy crisis on war footings and several steps had already been taken in this regard.

She narrated that the construction of new dams and laying of new pipes for ensuring uninterrupted gas supply was top on the agenda of the government to resolve energy crisis. The minister said unscheduled loadshedding of electricity and gas load management had created problems for the business community of Sialkot, adding steps had been taken for addressing the issue to keep the industrial wheel in motion. “Undoubtedly, the unscheduled loadshedding is creating serious economic problems for industrial workers, especially the daily-wagers, besides affecting the daily chores of the common man,” she said.

Dr Firdous said the current crisis of electricity and gas was temporary while the government was utilizing all-out resources to cope with the problems.