The popular channel on AIR radio, Vividh Bharati Service was conceived in the year 1957 to compete with Radio Ceylon. It marked the beginning of commercial service in Indian broadcasting . Earlier AIR had implemented a ban on film songs. Only programmes of classical music were allowed . For experimentation, commercials were first brought in the year 1967., The commercial service also got extended to Primary channels as well as FM & Local Radio Stations. They have understood that advertising speed up the social and material advancement of the country . The Radio Advertsing is lucrative thing for advertisers because of its reach even to remote areas of Indian subcontinent though un accessible for other media . Its recorded agencies solely provide advertisements to AIR. Clients are provided access to All the AIR stations . To popularize this service locally marketing professionals are employed . 15 major CBS Stations are formed in each state capital and they are the main player for booking for the total state. A Central Sales Unit called as CSU is also located at Mumbai mainly for reserving for more than one state. CSU provides a sole window reservation facility to alleviate mass booking with an individual contract.
The content of the programmes in Vividh Bharati are robust and wide-ranging. Some of the old popular programmes of Vividh Bharati include 'SANGEET SARITA', 'BHULE BISRE GEET', 'HAWA MAHAL', 'JAIMALA', 'INSE MILIYE', 'CHHAYA GEET' ETC., are still popular among listeners. Now and again new programmes like 'BISCOPE KE BATEIN', 'SARGAM KE SITARE', 'CELLULOID KE SITARE', 'SEHATNAMA', &' HELLO FARMAISH', were brought in. Vividh Bharati Service broadcasted these programmes centrally and up-linking to the Borivili, Mumbai stations are done. The downlinking of these programmes are provided to all the 40 Vividh Bharati stations through the earth stations that are installed there. These stations are known as Commercial Broadcasting Service Stations . They are located at all major and commercially viable cities extending to 97% of the Indian population.
Special audience programmmes are also a part and parcel of Vividh Bharati. Some local programmes incorporates regional feeling to its listeners. A special programme call Hello Kargil" was broadcasted .Through this soldiers stranded in borders regions remain colligated to their families and their acquaintances and thus became immensely popular.
Vividh Bharati Service proved its success connecting Indian Soliders posted on remote border areas to their family members through a special programme entitled "Hello Kargil", through which not only the family members of the soliders , but even a layman including young and old conveyed their best wishes to the soliders to keep up their morale. Vividh Bharati provides the platform to famous cine artists , writers, lyricists, directors and music directors to express their feelings and suggestions . "Ujaale Unki Yaadon Ke" is a programme where creative persons of the pasts reminisces their golden memories. Technological advancement transformed the programme transmission from earlier medium wave transmission to superior digital stereo FM. National Channel also broadcasts famous programmes of Vividh Bharat from 11 pm to 6 am. Vividh Bharat has also stepped into other countries apart from India. Direct to Home Service (DTH) provides this facility to its listeners worldwide.