Star Ananda officially starts beaming Wednesday morning

MUMBAI: "Eta Halo Star. Apanara Dekchen Star Ananda" (This is Star. You are watching Star Ananda). This signature tune was reverberating in a large number of Bengali homes from 9 am this morning, which is when Star's new regional language news channel officially started beaming.

Star Ananda, a Bengali news channel from Star-ABP Group, joins an already crowded Bengali language space. However, the channel is only the second full-fledged Bengali news channel after Tara Bangla.

The channel is aiming at garnering eye balls from the Bengali community, which is considered voracious readers and digester of information.

Through a variety of programmes have been concetpualised to attract viewers, the channel made its debut very tactically on a day when the Kolkata Municipal election campaigning was underway.

Media Content & Communications Services India Pvt. Ltd (MCCS) chief executive officer Uday Shankar said, Star Ananda is the expression of the Bengali on the move. It reflects their urges and aspirations and their impatience with the rate of change. Star Ananda will mirror the new vibrancy among the Bengali-speaking people. Besides, in emerging markets that are culturally rooted like Kolkata, there is a need for a dedicated channel that can offer high quality news coverage along with views and analysis in the language of the viewers.

At present, the channel has programmes weaved around the municipal election templated on the lines of the popular Kaun Banega Mukhyamantri that was on air during the recently concluded Bihar and Maharashtra assembly elections. Star Ananda is devoting a lot of airtime to the coverage for the elections. The programme has been identified as a platform for the Kolkata masses to air their concerns. Another programme with a similar aim in mind is Kolkata Kar. Star Ananda has infused some talk shows around the elections as well.

Among the branded segments on the channel are Khela Shuru (sport bulletin) and Baire Doore (international news).

Hoi Ma Noi Bau, meanwhile, is a daily afternoon show catering to television world. The show will provide a sneak-peak at the twist-turns of the popular soaps on Star Plus and also explore the lives of the celebrities. This show too is on similar lines to one that is already airing on Star News - Saas Bahu aur Saazish - which is targeted at housewives.

A high focus local interest segment is slotted at 6 pm with Ekhon Kolkata (Kolkata at the moment) and at 8 pm Abaar Kolkata, which will be a round-up of the day's happening in the metropolis. Other programmes on the menu include Saata Khobor (News at 7 pm), Star Khobor, (Prime News at 9 pm), a special chat show for Sunday's - Hello VIP, which will bring in people from all walks of life.

Star Ananda has hired reporters who possess experience from television arena as well as print. The channel has a team of 100 odd professionals, headquartered at AG Bose Road, Kolkata.

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