(BGF) – Shubhranshu Choudhary, founder of CGNet, was listed among the Chroniclers in the American Foreign Policy 100 Leading Global Thinker 2014 “for giving rural Indians a megaphone”.

Choudhary left his job as a BBC producer in 2010 to launch the mobile news service Central Gondwana Net Swara (CGNet Swara) run in 23 official languages in India.  The system allows people in remote areas of India to use mobile phones to send and listen to audio reports in their local language.

Choudhary trained hundreds of citizen journalists to send in reports, which are verified by professional journalists. Reports are then made public on the mobile phone platform, where the community can access them. Choudhary also posts the stories on a website, giving them a national and global reach that is making the voices and issues of villagers in secluded areas heard. Since 2010, officials have directly addressed at least 120 problems or complaints first reported by the service.

In a talk with the Pioneer, Choudhary said: ” “We are concentrating in tribal areas because they are the poorest of the poor people – farthest from the mainstream – who have taken up guns and challenged the Government of India, challenged the democratic notion of governance”.

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CGNet Swara FounderChoudhary makes it to FP TOP ‘100 GLOBAL THINKERS’

November 19, 2014 | By Zafar Alam Khan

Founder of Central Gondwana Net Swara (CGNet Swara) community radio service run from the State capital, Shubhranshu Choudhary (in pic) has made city proud once again by getting place in the list of ‘100 global thinkers’ by leading American Foreign Policy (FP) magazine.

Notably, Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) president Amit Shah have also been named in the list (as top decision makers). Listed among the Chroniclers or ‘the masters of storytelling’, is Shubhranshu Choudhary, founder of CGNet “for giving rural Indians a megaphone”.

Choudhary, who left his job as a BBC producer in 2010 to launch the mobile news service CGNet Swara “beat out leaker Edward Snowden for the Google Digital Activism Award”, the magazine noted. “Journalism needs to become everybody’s business,” Choudhary was quoted as saying when receiving the award.

Choudhary while talking to The Pioneer after the award function at Washington DC on Monday night said, “These awards are good as they give us visibility to get attention of our urban supporters who are an equally important part of the project where we are trying to build connectivity between rural and urban activists.”

Choudhary further said, “These international honours are always good to give attention to the remotest parts of India. India is something more between Delhi and Bangalore, and beyond Gurgaon.”

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