Television

Sahara Samay-Mumbai 'test launches' Friday

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MUMBAI: Sahara Samay-Mumbai, Sahara Group's western India-specific news channel, which was supposed to officially launch tomorrow (26 September), will make a "test launch at 9 am", according to channel head Rajiv K Bajaj.

"Starting tomorrow, we will have eight hours of fresh news everyday. This is a test period, during which time we well check the signals, look for glitches, and fine tune the system. The real launch will happen some time after the festival of Dassera," Bajaj told indiantelevision.com.

Pitched against a plethora of Hindi language news channels, the USP of Sahara Samay-Mumbai is that it will cover Maharashtra, parts of Gujarat and Goa. "Our credo is to cover news from your neighbourhood. Not just that, we will also find solutions to civic and community problems. In short, our channel will be a tabloid on television," Bajaj explained.

Special programmes in the channel will include the RKB Show, anchored by Bajaj himself; Do Peher, Kai Raste, a show on social awareness anchored by Kunika Lall; Campus Calling, a show on teens and Panchnama, a show on crime in the city, among others.

In order to attract the elderly audience, a religious programme will be aired every morning at 6 am. The show will only concentrate on religious news only. "We are also going to cover business in a very unique way. We will look into the retailing business, and how it affects the common man," Bajaj says.

Starting tomorrow evening, the Sahara Samay crew will telecast live shows of 'Dandiya Raas' in the city. Present at the venue with the Sahara team will be Aadesh Srivatsav, singer Sapna Mukenrjee and a new talent every day for the next nine days.

Bajaj anticipates the channel to be a big success because, "the entire country has a great fascination for Mumbai".
Sahara Samay Mumbai has a strong team of 25 reporters in Mumbai itself. Besides the channel's national bureau will also offer support.

As for Kunika Lall's role in the channel, Bajaj said, "She will be our anchor and news reader. She was among the few people we auditioned and we discovered that she was really good at news reading.

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