Song & Drama Division got an independent status in 1960 as a subordinate office of the Ministry of Information & Broadcasting. Prior to that, the division used to function as a unit of All India Radio during the period of 1954-1960.
The Division has 12 Regional Centres at Bhopal, Chandigarh, Delhi, Guwahati, Lucknow, Chennai, Pune, Calcutta, Bangalore, Ranchi, Dehradun and Raipur. It has nine Sub-Centres located at Bhubneshwar, Hyderabad, Patna, Imphal, Jodhpur, Darbhanga, Nainital, Shimla and Srinagar (Jammu).
Aims & Objectives
In spite of the development of non-personal modern media of mass communication like Radio, Television, Films and Press, the traditional media of live, face to face performance before audience, still hold an important place in the pattern of communication with the masses. The division aims to promote the live performances including the variety of folk forms.
Live media comprising traditional and the folk forms is being used by the Song & Drama division for plan publicity. Important aspects of the country’s life and development in different fields are being showcased through drama, folk, traditional plays, dance-drama, folk recitals and puppet shows.
- It creates awareness about social, economic and democratic ideals
- People living in the border area are given a sense of defense preparedness and cultural integrity with the rest of the country
- Army jawans manning the isolated forward areas are provided with live entertainment media which includes both urban theatre forms and folk forms covering all the regions of the country
- It presents special drama programmes with publicity contents through drama troupes maintained departmentally
- It organises programmes stressing national solidarity, unity, emotional integration, anti-aggression and defence, publilcity in areas adjoining international borders
- It organises drama festivals with the active cooperation of the State governments
- It utilizes private troupes, artistes and other professional and amateur talent available in the country for presenting publicity programmes with a message through ballets, dramas, folk plays, poetic symposia, composite programmes, folk and mythological epics, folk recitals, puppet shows and other popular media in all regional languages
- It acquires scripts in different languages on contemporary themes for use by troupes and artistes performing in the field on behalf of the Division
- It presents special sound and light features on various themes
Major Wings of Publicity Programme
Sound & Light Shows: Inspired by Europe’s Son-et-Lumiere, Sound & Light programmes of Song & Drama Divisionare performed on a series of stages spread over a large area. Samar Yatra, Subramanya Bharti, Indramma, Jag Chanan Hoya, Vidyapati, Mirza Ghalib, Akbar, Jhansi Ki Rani, Krishna Deva Raya, Assi As and Assis, Vision 1919, Badhte Kadam, Swatantram Tanne Jeevitham Karnataka Vaibhav, Ram Charit Manas, Amir Khusro, Amrtisar Shifti Da Ghar, Aur Kadam Badhte Rahe etc., are some of the popular and well known Sound and Light productions prepared and presented by the Division.
Armed Forces Entertainment: Established in 1967, Armed Forces Entertainment Wing’s troupes give performances in coordination and liason with Ministry of Defence. Programmes provided by the troups include light songs, gazals, qawalis, dances, sketches, humourous skits etc.
The objectives of this scheme are as follows:-
- To entertain the Jawans in forward areas
- To utilise the troupes in propagating Government policies in other areas also, when not required by the Defence Department
Border Publicity: The scheme of Border Publicity was started in 1966 utilising small performing parties of 10 artists each on an average composed of dancers, singers and musicians to project message on security, unity, national integration, defence publicity, patriotism etc. The troupes under this wing have been assigned the task of performing in the remote corners and on high altitude covering hilly and snowy areas
Through the programmes, the division seeks to break the mental isolation of the people living in border area, and make them feel they belong to the nation. Different programmes are created by this division which help people living in the border areas take pride in their culture. They are also made to realize that it is in their own interest to stand together and repeal any hostile element which tends to create dissatisfaction and unrest.
Departmental Drama: There are six Departmental Drama troupes each located at Delhi, Srinagar, Patna, Bhubneshwar, Pune & Hyderabad. Each troupe consists of 10 Actors 4 Actresses & 4 Technical Staff headed by an Assistant Director or Manager. These Drama Troupes produce full length dramas for a duration of 90 to 120 minutes on a specific theme such as Communal Harmony, Nation Integration & Health related themes etc. Some of the popular dramas produced by the Division are Darwaza Khol Do, Katghar, Jalchabi, Aapne Hindustan Main etc.