Television

Prashant Sanwal appointed head of Zee's Alpha channels

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More on executive movements in television land. Prashant Sanwal, former vice-president SET MAX, and till recently one of the four directors on the as yet stillborn MAK (Manoranjan, Aur Kya) Network, has joined Subhash Chandra's Zee Group.

Sanwal took charge yesterday as director of all Zee's regional language Alpha channels and will report to Sandeep Goyal, group broadcasting CEO, Zee Telefilms Ltd (ZTL).

Zee has said that it will be devoting a greater focus on the Alpha channels and Sanwal's appointment indicates just that. Sanwal will be looking at the Alpha channels from both a programming and marketing perspective, it is learnt.

Sanwal's appointment comes in tandem with ZTL's announcement yesterday that it has been given approval by the information and broadcasting ministry to uplink four additional channels directly from India. These channels are Kaveri (Kannada), Bharati (Tamil), Alpha Krishna and Alpha Urdu. It needs noting that while Zee has secured uplinking permission for Alpha Krishna (Telugu?) and Alpha Urdu, no such channels exist as yet on the Alpha platform.

"In three to four-months' time we will be re-launching the current Bharathi and Kaveri channels as Alpha Tamil and Alpha Kannada which will soon go off-air for the make-over,'' Goyal was quoted as saying in an official release yesterday. Currently there are four Alpha channels - Gujarati, Marathi, Bangla and Punjabi.

"We will also in due course examine the launch of Alpha Telugu and will evaluate our options in the Urdu space,'' Goyal was quoted as saying. 

With the I&B ministry's clearance, ZTL has received permission to uplink 10 channels from India through the teleport of Essel Shyam Communication Ltd at Noida. 

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