News channel Aaj Tak completes a year in operation

Exactly a year ago on 31 December, 2000, 24-hour Hindi news channel Aaj Tak was launched by India Today Group.


Today, the channel claims to enjoy a share of over 55 per cent in Hindi speaking markets within the news genre with viewers spending as high as 70 minutes weekly watching the channel. Aaj Tak CEO G Krishnan, said: "The viewership is a true reflection of the appreciation that we have received from the viewers & the advertising fraternity."


As far as the advertising is concerned, one big success that Aaj Tak has chalked up is in managing to mop up a wide range of ads from players who were traditionally not known to set aside budgets for television.


The channel's aim is to bring in-depth & incisive coverage to viewers and has listed the following events as being worthy of note:


On Republic Day (26 January) when the a devastating earthquake struck Gujarat it had round the clock coverage of the earthquake-ravaged state. A highlight was a unique platform - Meri Aawaz Suno (here my voice) - where people spoke their views and how their lives were affected.


In June it was in Nepal with extensive reports and analysis by teams stationed in the Himalayan kingdom when the Royal Nepali prince killed his entire family in a fit of jealousy.


During the Agra Summit the channel claims to have set up a team of 24 members to cover Pakistan President Musharaf's visit to India. A correspondent was sent to Islamabad for the perspective on the summit from across the border.


Like other channels Aaj Tak kept the events of 11 September in focus. Aaj Tak claims to be the first Indian news channel to reach Afghanistan after US bombings commenced.


The channel claims that within half an hour of the 13 December terrorist attack on Parliament, it had the minister for parliamentary affairs Pramod Mahajan live from inside the Parliament on the line. This was followed by exclusive interviews of George Fernandes (defence minister) and information & broadcasting minister Sushma Swaraj.

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