CNBC-TV18 introduces a slew of new programmes for Budget

MUMBAI: CNBC-TV18 has lined up a host of new programmes for the upcoming Union Budget, which will voice the opinions and demands of the Indian population this year.

CNBC's budget line up is titled Will the dream team deliver? and will highlight the various issues and sectors that the finance minister is likely to address, while trying to strike the right balance.

The budget programming will be led by the channel's anchors with analysis by India's most respected economic experts. Views and reactions from India's industry captains, in-depth discussions with finance faces and high profile forums will comprise CNBC's budget programming.

A set of pre-budget roundtables in the major metros of India, where industry leaders and experts convene to discuss expectations and issues that this year's budget must address has also been organized. This platform will bring forth important issues and possible solutions to the budget makers of the day. These pre-budget roundtables will attempt to answer the inevitable question on whether the 'Dream Team' will jumpstart the Indian economy through radical reforms or settle for a more cautious and balanced approach.

The pre-budget related programming focuses on the different sectors that the FM is likely to address like: telecom and broadband, capital goods, retail, direct and indirect tax, electrical industry, steel, healthcare, FMCG etc.

As part of Union budget programming, CNBC will also air vignettes on: Taxation, If I Were FM - Youth Matters, Grand Ideas - an Economist's Vision of the budget, CEO Speak and What the World thinks.

Brief stories on the impact of the budget in all walks of life will also be an important part of the budget programming through: Home Affairs - Family aspirations from the Budget, Small Stuff - SME aspirations from the Budget, Worker Speak - Labour's aspirations from the Budget and Industry Wish-lists - individual industry demands from the budget.

Sector specific on-ground budget vectors, roundtables and polls (both common man and CEO polls) with special focus on sunrise sectors like Biotechnology, Cement, Healthcare; Textiles will also be a part of the programming initiative. To complement this, the Budget Factoids, Budget Q&A, Budget Bulletins and Budget Caravan will also be aired. Budget Caravan a special for this year's budget, will be telecast live.

The railway budget will be covered live with analysis of the implications with final predictions from experts on what lies ahead.

Awaaz, on the other hand, will not only cover Budget 2005 but also translate the consumer's voice, their dreams and their opinions. Some special consumer-oriented programmes that Awaaz will air especially during the budget season are:

Meri Awaaz Suno: The common man's expectations from Budget 2005

Budget Chaupal: Expectations of the unorganised interest groups and communities

Har Ghar Ki Kahani: Showcasing money management skills of families from different income groups and witnessing the impact of Budget 2005 on their financial planning

CEO Panchayat: Budget 2005 from the eyes of India's prominent businessmen

Laloo Express: Pre-Budget expectations on the Railway Budget and indepth discussions on Budget day about the impact of the Railway

The programmes will be aired at 10 pm with repeat telecasts on weekends. The channel has also roped in Karan Thapar to anchor two special Budget episodes every week.

CNBC-TV18 vice president sales and marketing B Saikumar said, "The theme of the budget programming "Will the dream team deliver?" feels the pulse and the anticipation of millions of Indians who are looking forward for a more consumer friendly budget. There is no mistaking the great expectations for the future brought on by a mood that has never been this buoyant in recent years. CNBC-TV18 through its comprehensive budget programming reiterates its commitment to providing its viewers a holistic perspective of national decisions that affect every aspect of their lives."

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