Nepal Television (NTV) is perhaps one of the youngest television stations in Asia, It started as a project in January 1985 under the Sixth Development Plan (1980-1985) in which a provision was made "to undertake feasibility study of the establishment of television in the country and to begin TV transmission service at selected places if found feasible from economic and technical standpoints." Despite doubts felt by many, it began its experimental transmission for Kathmandu Valley in a very modest manner with VHF equipment and in the UHF band, In those days there were only about 400 TV sets, the majority of which were used basically for video purposes. Some of these receivers were also used for receiving Doordarshan signals. The thirst for TV programmes was growing. When Nepal TV went on air with its thirty minutes transmission, the number of TV sets increased dramatically. A 100 watt transmitter was then set up to cover Kathmandu valley during this experimental transmission, Regular transmission of two hours commenced by the end of 1985. In February of 1986, it became a full fledged corporation under the Communication Act of His Majesty's Government.
Established as an electronic medium to enhance the country's socio-economic development, Nepal Television currently covers 42% of the country's population and-32% of the land area. Programmes are thus mostly geared to inform and educate the general mass. With the extension of the network. transmission hours have also increased 6l hours per week.
NTV is supervised by aboard of directors who are appointed by the Ministry of Information and Communication. The Board, headed by the Chairman, consists of six members including the General Manager. One membership is exclusively set aside to represent the staff.
After twelve years of service, the total number of staff has increased to a total of 304 . Out of these 203 are permanent and 101 are on contract basis. Most are on the technical side, totaling 191 and the remaining 140 are non-technical. The Organization is constantly seeking to further enhance the staff's talents by way of training and motivation.
The Asia Pacific Institute for Broadcast Development (AIBD) has been the major source for Nepal Television in getting its staff trained in various areas of television, The other institutes who have supported NTV in training are Asia Pacific Broadcasting Union, Radio Netherlands Training Centre, JICA, Tun Abdul Razak Broadcasting Institute, Deutsche Welle Television Training Centre, Worldview Foundation and other related institutions.
Besides these NTV also conducts its own in-house training programmes at regular intervals.
Considering the difficult terrain of the country' it is almost impossible for NTV to reach the entire population without the use of satellite, Therefore, as the 21 st century approaches and in keeping pace with development efforts, NTV looks ahead into transmitting its programmes via satellite within the next three years. This would not only cover the entire country, it would also make its signals available to Nepalese living abroad and to others who would be interested in knowing more about Nepal.
Satellite transmission has been incorporated in the Ninth Five Year Plan (1998-2002) of His Majesty's Government As per the Ninth Plan the first two years will concentrate on the preparation, Le, network planning, studio design, maintenance centre and calibration lab, a research on the possibility of participation from the private sector, equipment purchase etc. Transmission, programme production, updating, evaluation etc. will be carried out in the following three years. A channel will be dedicated solely for Distance Education.
The Organization is now gearing up for this preparation. Programmes have been accordingly planned and a training Centre is soon to be established. It is from this time onwards that Nepal TV will be operating with state of the art equipment.
NTV is a full member of the Asia Pacific Broadcasting Union whose headquarter is located in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. It obtained this membership in 1987. It is also an associate member of the Geneva based European Broadcasting Union.