Late last year, a Seventh-day Adventist program was broadcast for the first time on FM radio in India. The program was produced by Adventist World Radio (AWR) in the Telugu language and was on a station in Hyderabad, India. The name of the program is Avennel, which means Moonlight in Telugu.

“This is a very significant step to reach the large cities in India, involving two years of intensive work negotiating with related agencies and preparing the programs,” says AWR president Dowell Chow. “Thanks to God and our faithful supporters, we are now blessed to be able to witness the opening of a new window of opportunity to reach the people of India with the gospel of salvation.”

Hyderabad—known as India’s “cyber capital”—is a city of more than nine million people and has the largest Muslim population in India. After China, India is the second mostpopulated country in the world.

Additional broadcasts have started in English in the cities of Pune and Shillong, and others will follow in Hindi and English in large cities such as Mumbai, Kolkata, Bangalore, and Delhi, as resources permit.

AWR works with the All India Radio Authority to clear the programs for airing. The agent, Avinash Paul, is a young entrepreneur and dedicated Christian from another denomination. He said, “I am really thankful to know how important this project is for AWR and for Indian listeners to transform themselves and know about the truth. I am grateful you considered me to be a part of this project, and I promise you that I will dedicate myself to its success.”

AWR currently broadcasts programs for Indian listeners in 11 languages through shortwave radio, on demand, and podcasts. Two additional languages—Gujarati and Oriya— are in development. Worldwide, AWR programs can be heard in nearly 100 languages. Please visit or iTunes for more information.

Shelley Nolan Freesland is AWR communication director at the General Conference world headquarters.