London: After protests and signature
campaigns against the proposed closure of the Hindi Service,
the BBC on Monday said it will continue a one-hour evening
broadcast in Hindi for another year while it explores
alternative funding options.
Several leading journalists and individuals opposed
the closure of the Hindi service as part of the BBC`s
The service was to close on March 31, but has now been
allowed another year.
The BBC World Service says it has been approached by a
number of commercial parties about alternative funding for the
But if no alternatives were found, the service will
then close in March 2012.
The campaign was supported by writers such as
Arundhati Roy, Vikram Seth and broadcaster Mark Tully.
Campaigners said BBC Hindi broadcasts have 10
million listeners, many of them in rural areas in India.
The Hindi service was started in 1940, and gained a
large listnership at a time when India`s news media were state