Tarana Khan

Hindi podcasts debut with Podbharti launch

This is the first radio-format Hindi podcast service in India. Podbharti has partnered with Indicast to share content

Hindi bloggers Debashish Chakrabarty and Shashi Singh have been at it for four years. Seeing blogging in Hindi and other vernacular languages grow from the shadows into the limelight, they realised that this was the right time to launch a Hindi podcast service. So, here it is. Podbharti (www.podbharti.com) podcasts in “pure Hindi”, as they call it. The website has partnered with Indicast, an Indian podcast service in English, to share content.

Both Chakrabarty, a software consultant, and Singh, who works on mobile content, are passionate about the Hindi language, especially its propagation on new media. “Podcasting was a natural extension of our blogging efforts. Our podcasts will be in a radio show format,” says Chakrabarty.

Chakrabarty says that there are about 700 regular Hindi bloggers out there and many times that number of readers. Languages like Tamil, Gujarati, Bengali and Marathi are also proving conducive to blogging, he adds.

Hindi podcasts debut with Podbharti launch
Podbharti has already run its first episode two weeks ago. It featured popular Hindi bloggers like Anup Shukla and Ravi Ratlami who spoke about the transliteration tools available for blogging in Hindi. Chakravarty says that future episodes, which are out fortnightly, will focus on the Uttar Pradesh political scene, social issues and Bollywood. The content will be developed exclusively for the podcasts and will then appear on networked websites such as Nirantar (
), a Hindi blogzine published by Debashish.

He also adds that bandwidth issues in India restrict the length of the podcast to about 15 minutes, as many users still don’t have broadband connections. Apart from downloading podcasts on music devices, users can also hear them online on Podbharti’s website.

Podbharti will follow the Indicast business model and introduce ad spots in about seven or eight months. Advertisers who are in the audio business, such as WorldSpace, are likely to be approached for placing their audio spots, which will run before the podcast begins.

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