Television

Zee launches reality show 'Raaah' tomorrow

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It's no Prisoner Of War but India's first homegrown reality show in the action genre is finally launching on the Zee Network. 

Last year Zee TV had announced with much fanfare that it was launching a reality show Prisoners Of War loosely modelled on the successful UK show Jailbreak. Those plans however were shelved but the channel is all set to unleash Romance, Adventure Aap Aur Hum (Raaah). Launching tomorrow at noon it will air on Sundays.

Miditech (promoted by Nikhil and Niret Alva) has produced the show which has been billed as India's first adventure-reality game show. Game shows are not a new phenomenon to Indian television but what makes this one different from the likes of Star's Kaun Banega Crorepati and Kamzor Kadii Kaun is that the contest incorporates adventure. 

Raaah tests the physical, mental and emotional endurance of its participants. The participants consist of five married couples who have to confront an extreme environment. They compete against each other. Each couple operates as a team in the show which is shot over four hectic days. 

Miditech CEO Nikhil Alva made these remarks: " Its going to be the first reality show on Indian television. We have produced a totally new format and not an Indian version of any Western reality shows. With such a show there is always a great degree of unpredictability, since there is no telling how real people will react in a given situation. We will transmit real excitement, adventure and romance onto the screen."

The teams have to play different types of sports which will test their dexterity and stamina. They include yak riding & shepherding, mountain biking, four-wheel drive rallies, rappelling, trekking, white-water rafting and camping in the wilderness. Every day performances are evaluated and one couple is eliminated. Two couples battle it out on the fourth and final day for the grand prize. 

Apartments, the latest cars, luxury cruises, adventure gear are some of the goodies on offer. Vrajesh Hirjee will anchor Raaah. 

A release states that the first few episodes of Raaah have already been shot on location in the gruelling locales of the Spiti Valley in Himachal Pradesh. Elaborating further on the new initiative Niret Alva says: "We conducted an extensive location search and decided upon the Spiti Valley as the perfect backdrop for the first show. Raaah in Hindi stands for The Way and we firmly believe that Raaah is the way forward for Indian Television." 

Miditech had previously done Hospital but Raaah has proved to be far more logistically challenging. The production called for a crew as large as 70 people including seven camera units, as well as adventure and safety instructors, given the complex technical requirements. The challenge is that the areas are remote and are difficult to enter into. There are no communication systems in place. Both in front of the camera and behind, teamwork is often the deciding factor. 

Miditech was founded in 1993. Its other reality based shows and programmes also include Kahani Jurm Ki on Star Plus and "Kuch Yaadein Kuch Baatein which will shortly be telecast on Star Gold. Other shows the company has made include Living On The Edge the first and longest running environment series. Then there was The Great Escape a travel show; and Hospital. 

Miditech has also produced film-based programmes, talk and game shows by the Entertainment division. The films division has also come out with path breaking natural history, exploration shows, historical and social documentaries. The Infotainment division covers lifestyle, travel and information technology shows. The fiction division makes real life drama and soap operas. The current affairs division news handles analysis, political talk shows, reality and environment programmes.

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