MUMBAI: The battle for the top among production houses has now spilled over from cable and satellite homes and into all TV homes.
The UTV produced Muslim social thriller - Meher on DD National has climbed into the top 20 in the TRP stakes The serial commenced airing on 3 January 2004 with an initial TVR of 7.0, coming in at number 18. In the second week of telecast, the serial again garnered a TVR of 7.2. According to UTV, the serial has scored a record average TVR of 8.4 in the second week.
Says the production house, this is the first time such a genre is being telecast on DD 1. Aired on Saturdays and Sundays at 8.30 pm, Meher has taken up a slot earlier filled by a news bulletin. This slot did not command TVRs over 3 or 4, claims UTV.
The Balaji Telefilms produced Kayamat is the other show that has been racing to the top of the charts on DD, commanding TVRs of around 10, coming in at the number two slot. Like in C&S households, where Balaji and UTV are pitched against each other for ratings, Doordarshan has become the next hunting ground for the two. The BR Chopra production Aap Beeti however, currently holds sway over all TV homes with a TVR that hovers around 12.6.
Meher, meanwhile, revolves around the main protagonist, Meher's trials and tribulations - a story of a fiery progressive Muslim girl belonging to a small town as she finds herself pitted against a very conservative, corrupt and hypocritical social order. It is also about Meher who gets trapped into marriage with a con man and about the battle of wits that ensues.
UTV, that is back on DD after a long gap (Meerabai, Shehnai, Mile Sur Mera Tumhara were the last few offereings) says Meher has been conceived with high production values. Directed by Sachin Deo, it stars Payal Nair, Rajiv Paul, Negi C, Buddhaditya, Rajesh Jolly and Anjali Mukhi.
UTV says Meher is just the first of several shows lined up for Doordarshan.