Monday, April 06, 2009

BBC commissions India Election Train to cover polls

The British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) has launched a unique multiplatform, multilingual initiative, the 'India Election Train' to cover news on the go during the run-up to the country's General Elections in May.

Working with the Indian Railways, reporters from the BBC's Global News division will travel through India by train, investigating what Indians want from their General Election and the key themes surrounding it from 25 April until 13 May.

On board the train will reporters from BBC World Service English, BBC Hindi, BBC Urdu, BBC Tamil, BBC Bengali, BBC Somali, BBC Swahili, BBC World News television, Arabic TV, Persian TV and BBC.Com/news. Highly knowledgeable about the country, a number permanently based there, the journalists will broadcast stories to the world, across radio, TV and online.

The BBC has worked with Indian Railways to design a timetable for the project and the train will travel along the following route: Delhi-Ahmedabad-Mumbai-Hyderabad-Bhubaneswar-Kokata (Kolkata)-Patna-Allahabad-Dehli. With the team visiting major population centres, as well as contrasting provincial towns and rural areas, the BBC's global audience will get to hear the views of a wide range of Indian voters.

Online users will be able to track the journey of the train through a special interactive map and a daily blog available on the BBC's India Election webpage

BBC reporters will investigate a variety of topics throughout their journey, with a key one being India's response to the current economic crisis. India's economy is still growing and some believe it could assist the recovery of other markets around the world.

Richard Sambrook, Director BBC Global News, says: "The BBC's approach to covering the India Election is unique and representative of the breadth and depth of its newsgathering facility. Multiplatform and multilingual, the BBC India Election Train will provide audiences in India and around the world with an in-depth view of the election and the key themes and issues surrounding it". (

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