How to Start FM Radio Station in India?

Ever dreamed of running your own FM radio station? Do you really espire to start your own FM radio station in india? This is an in-depth guide for you! To do so, you have to get permission from MIB (Ministry of Information & Broadcasting, Govt. of India). No one is entitled to provide this license except for the MIB. After getting the final clearances from the WPC, you can start your broadcast on the frequency (Radio FM). In 2011, the Govt of India decided to launch FM Radio broadcast stations to cover a total of 839 FM radio channels in 294 cities! Correspondingly, to begin you have to bid & get your radio station frequency on FM megahertz from the reserve prices set for the auction by the Govt of India. Furthur more, you can go ahead & purchase your FM Transmitter & the antenna, set up the audio equipment and start broadcasting your radio on the FM. 

The cost of a commercial FM radio station starts from 50 lakhs to 1 Crore.  (98.3 FM Radio Mirchi, 94.3 MY FM, etc). You can download the PDF copy of the policy & guidelines by the MIB, Govt of India for procuring your FM Licence most easily! 

Ease of Setup: FM Radio versus Internet Radio

In this article, you will learn how to start an FM radio station, and also build your own radio station on the internet. Radio stations in India are getting boom! This is due to Prime Minister Mr. Narendra`s exclusive use of Radio against TV for his program Maan Ki Baat. Obvious, since radio is the world`s oldest & mode of communication through audio & on-air frequencies (AIR & Akashvani). It is 100% Free and available to anyone & everyone. It requires low resources and can be very well used during emergencies. 

Since the FM radio frequency is very expensive, Riggro Digital has introduced Internet radio technology to empower every radio aspirant to start their own radio station online or on the internet. Uniquely, our online radio stations play at just 2 kbps. Thus many FM & Community Radios Stations are broadcasting their FM radio stations on our platforms.  They get amazing easy tools like automation & scheduling software with Auto DJ which makes their broadcasting live easiest! Subsequently, this also helps to cut down their operational costs by up to 90%.

They are using our radio hosting services and streaming audios on their FM radio stations connecting our android apps to their transmitters.  Cloud Automation & Internet radio Broadcasting Solutions for FM Radios

Our client, Radio Parbhani, has expressed:

“We are extremely happy using the cloud automation radio broadcasting services by Riggro Digital . We are broadcasting our FM Radio station from the cloud . Surprisingly, there is less human dependency & we are able to cut down the operational cost of our FM radio station by 90%! “

Riggro Digital has introduced the Internet radio technology

History of Internet radio stations

The 1st Internet radio started its broadcasting on June 24, 1993, by Carl Malamud. He started broadcasting with a talk online radio from his computer. The first music band that performed Live on the internet radio was Severe Tire Damage on June 24, 1993. Then later in 1994, there came up with an Irish online news radio broadcaster for the Irish community across the world. Furthermore, the Rolling Stones concert was the first major concert broadcasted over the online radio in November 1994. The first Analogue terrestrial radio station to broadcast over the internet was WXYC (89.3 FM Chapel Hill, North Carolina, USA) was on November 7, 1994. To more about the Internet radio stations History- Click Here 

Riggro Digital launched its first internet radio station in India called – Radio Jay Bhim on 14th April. Currently, we have over 3 million-plus internet radio users across the world! All our radio stations can be found on various global radio platforms, websites & apps like radio. garden,,, Streema, TuneIn Radio, and  

To start an Internet Radio Station, there is no license required from the MIB due to the fact there is no spectrum or no Frequency is required. The Internet Radios use the user’s web connection for which the consumer is already paying. So as of now, the MIB has nowhere stated any license for Starting an Internet Radio or Online Radio Station.

Procedure for Starting FM Radio Stations in India?

The Ministry of Information & Broadcasting invited sealed Bids forms for expansion to start FM Radios in India through private agencies (Phase – II) as per TENDER No. 212/14/2005 – FM.

Further, to expand more reach of FM Radio broadcasting in the country, the Government has embarked upon Phase III to enable the setting up of private FM Radio channels in all cities with a population of more than 1 lakh. The bidding for which was approximately Rs. 50 Lakhs – up to Rs. 25 Cr depending upon the grades of the cities. Example- Mumbai, Nasik, Agra, etc.

What are the Permissions and investments required to set up FM Radio Stations in India?

Permission for the channels is granted on the basis of a Non-Refundable One Time Entry Fee (NOTEF). NOTEF is the capital investment for an FM Radio operator. NOTEF also includes annual license fees and operational expenses. In the same manner, Reserved Price (RP) or say bid prices for FM Radio channels in a city, largely depend upon the revenue generation potential of that particular city/coverage area. The Cabinet approved the RP for the other 11 cities as Rs. 5 Lakhs as their population is less than 1 lakh and as these cities have their own strategic importance.

For new channels in existing FM Phase-II cities, the highest bid price received for that city in Phase-II.
And for new cities, Reserved Price will be calculated by various methods like Valuation of the FM Station, Valuation by GSDP (Gross State Domestic Product), Valuation based on Listener-ship, and Valuation based on revenue generation potential.


A total of 338 channels in 91 cities across the country are being made available for bidding by Indian private companies at this stage for FM Radio License. The list of cities along with categories and the number of channels in each city for bidding is available on this Ministry’s website
Every applicant shall be allowed to bid for only one FM Radio License per city provided that the total number of Channels allocated to an applicant shall not exceed the overall limit of 15% of the total Channels allocated in India.



Foreign Investment

In the applicant company, total foreign investment, including FDI by Overseas Corporate Bodies/Non – Resident Indians/Persons of Indian Origin, etc., portfolio investments by Foreign Institutional Investors (FII), within limits prescribed by RBI shall not exceed 20% of the paid-up equity in the entity, subject to the following conditions for FM Radio License in India

1:- One Indian individual or company owns more than 50% of the paid-up equity in the applicant entity excluding the equity held by banks and other lending institutions.
2:-  The majority shareholder exercises management control over the applicant entity.
3:-The applicant entity has only resident Indians as directors on the board.
4:- All key executive officers of the applicant entity are resident Indians.


The applicants who want to Start FM Radio Stations will be eligible to participate in bidding for Channels in all four regions, their financial eligibility shall be assessed on the basis of the following criteria:

Minimum Net Worth required for one Channel per City in each region :

§D category Cities:Rs. 50 Lakh.
§C category Cities:Rs. 1 Crore.
§B category Cities:Rs. 2 Crore.
§A or A+ category Cities:Rs. 3 Crore.
§All Cities in all regions:Rs. 10 Crore.

The applicant company who wants to Start FM Radio Stations would be required to furnish annual reports and audited final accounts for the last three years, or in the case of a newly incorporated company, balance sheets from the date of incorporation till March 31, 2005.
An applicant company registered after March 31, 2005, shall have to demonstrate its net worth as on 30.9.2005.


  • Companies not incorporated in India.
  • Any company controlled by a person convicted of an offense involving moral turpitude or declared as insolvent or applied for being declared insolvent;
  • Company associate of or controlled by a Trust, Society or Non-Profit Organization;
  • A company controlled by or associated with a religious body;
  • Any company controlled by or associated with a political body;
  • The company which is functioning as an advertising agency or is an associate of an advertising agency or is controlled by an advertising agency or person associated with an advertising agency;
  • A subsidiary company of any applicant in the same City;
  • Holding company of any applicant in the same City;
  • Companies with the Same Management within a City;
  • More than one Inter-Connected Undertaking in the same City.
  • Any company that has been debarred from taking part in the bidding process by virtue of default in Phase – I or it’s an associate company with the same management.
  • The defaulters of conditions under Phase-I, who have contested the revocation of their Letters of Intent/License Agreements, thereby continue to be debarred from participating in any future bidding process as per Phase policy.

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