Under attack from BJP, the Shiv Sena-led Maha Vikas Aghadi government will carry out a special publicity campaign from January to March by spending Rs 16.53 crore to project a slew of its achievements despite the coronavirus pandemic in its over two-year term. The media blitzkrieg is aimed to counter BJP’s criticism and paint MVA government’s image as pro-people and pro-development despite Centre’s go-bye to cooperative and competitive federalism principle. Apart from traditional media which includes newspapers, radio and TV, the government will extensively use OTT platforms, social media, BotChat, FMs, community radio, street plays and groups of artists in the image building exercise.
The government’s move is important as Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray is recovering from spine surgery and the rift between the government and the Governor is increasing on a number of issues including the amendments to the Public Universities Act to clip powers of the Governor and the Governor’s refusal to clear the government’s proposal on Speaker’s elections through voice vote instead of secret ballot following the amendments in the assembly rules.
The state general administration department on Thursday issued a government resolution providing financial and administrative approval for the expenses worth Rs 16.53 crore on special publicity campaign for 2021-22.
Of which Rs 4 crore will be spent on advertisements in print media on government schemes and programmes by strictly adhering to election code of conduct, Rs 60 lakh will be spent on dissemination of government messages on OTT platforms various including compensation to farmers hit by various natural calamities, implementation of crop loan waiver scheme, 0% agri loan to farmers, ShivBhojan and also how Maharashtra continues to be the favoured destination and attracted investments of over Rs 2 lakh crore despite the COVID-19 crisis. The publicity drive on OTT platforms will start in January.
The government will spend Rs 1.45 crore on creatives for advertisements to be rolled out in print, electronic and social media on various development works including the flagship Mumbai Nagpur Samruddhi Marg, Mumbai Coastal Road, Mumbai Trans Harbour Link.
Further, Rs 80 lakh will be spent on short films on various development works to be shown on Sahyadri in January-February, Rs 2.60 crore on publications of interviews and government messages on private Marathi news channels shortlisted by the Directorate of Advertising and Visual Publicity, Rs 4.05 crore on 1,000 hoardings, Rs 1.30 crore on street plays and art groups to give publicity for government schemes.
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