Television

Congress TV Agenda?

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With elections looming large, the spotlight may be on political parties and their candidates however an unlikely candidate seems to have entered the fray, i.e. television.



Very quietly, two shows have been launched on two TV channels within the span of one week, bearing an uncanny resemblance to Indias biggest ruling party - the Congress.



One; Anil Kapoors Indian adaptation of the American espionage series 24, which aired on Colors on 4 October and the other; Desh Ki Beti - Nandini, which premiered on Sony on 7 October.

    

The desi 24 sees the young scion of a political family, Aditya Singhania played by Neil Bhoopalam, reaching out to the countrys youth a la our very own vice president of the Congress Party, Rahul Gandhi.



While Desh Ki Beti has a bun-sporting, saree and long sleeve blouse-clad Nandini waving out to the crowd, reminiscent of Indias only woman PM, the late Indira Gandhi.



Leaving aside similarities; both the shows couldnt have been timed better. North India goes to elections in November while the race for Indias next PM unfolds in the first half of 2014.



24 will end in approximately three months but the impact is sure to last. That Colors reduced the air time of one of its most popular shows, Comedy Nights with Kapil, to accommodate the series is proof of just how much is riding on the timing. Similarly, Sony prematurely pulled the plug on its earlier week day show Chhanchhan to make way for Nandini, citing low TRPs as reason.



Social media has been quick to catch the so-called connect between these shows and the ruling party. Heres sampling the kind of comments on Twitter and Facebook: A new show called desh ki beti nandini seems to be funded by congress, daily soap Nandini will subtly glorify pre emergency Indira. Direct editorial control from Rahul Gandhi, waiting for Aditya Singhania the 24 character based on Rahul Gandhi, to take his speech and say phaad ke phenk do, 24 just predicted a Rahul Gandhi victory and so on.



Makes one wonder whether this is part of the viewers fertile imagination or truly Congress Ka Haath behind these shows...

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