The Ministry of Information and Broadcasting is likely to raise its advertising budget by 20 percent in the year 2018-19 ahead of the general election, a Mint report said.
From Rs 180 crore allocated last year to the Directorate of Advertising and Visual Publicity (DAVP), the ministry may raise advertising allocation to Rs 220 crores this year, as per the report. DAVP handles advertising on behalf of different ministries, departments, public sector firms and autonomous bodies for the central government.
To highlight their achievements, every department of every ministry allocates a certain amount from its yearly budget for advertising. These funds are routed through the DAVP. The I&B ministry uses advertisements not only to showcase its own merits and achievements but that of the government.
In the three years of PM Modi’s government, as of March 31, 2017, DAVP incurred expenses of almost Rs 3,473 crores. The NDA government has spared no medium to advertise and gain publicity: print, television, radio and the internet.
“The DAVP allocation may be revised to Rs 250 crore towards the end of the year, given the importance of these two years,” the ministry official added.
The states going for elections in 2018 are Karnataka, Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan, Chhattisgarh, Nagaland, Meghalaya, Tripura and Mizoram.
The report indicated that media buyers are expecting heavy advertising from the government, owing to the cut-throat competition in states like Himachal Pradesh.
“With the election in mind, government’s focus on advertising increases. Media strategy is tightened during election time. This government has more emphasis on social media as youth is present on these platforms,” a former I&B Ministry official commented.