Television

For DD, it's time to introspect not celebrate

http://www.indiantelevision.com/sites/drupal7.indiantelevision.co.in/files/styles/smartcrop_800x800/public/images/tv-images/2016/09/16/malgudi-days.jpg?itok=Lhi6Ocnk

NEW DELHI: There were evenings in the 1960s to mid '70s when India, at least those homes fortunate to have TV sets, set their alarm clock in the evening to around 6 pm. It was that time the TV sets came alive with a signature tune and colour bands heralding something exciting.

Those were the days when Indian pubcaster Doordarshan brought the world and entertainment --- in a rationed manner typical of those pre-liberalization days --- to Indian homes via production values that would be considered shoddy by today’s standards.

Cut to circa 2016. TV sets today beam audio and video round the clock by DD, as Doordarshan came to be popularly known as, and a swathe of private sector TV channels.

However, at a time when DD celebrated its Foundation Day (or birthday) on September 15, a question that rankles everybody is: Why does Doordarshan not function like some other pubcasters --- the BBC, NHK, DW, PBS, etc ---- in terms of functioning and quality of programming?

Clearly, it is linked to another question: was Doordarshan doing better off when it was a direct wing of the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting (MIB), or has it benefitted by become ‘autonomous’ under Prasar Bharati?

Doordarshan since 1959 beamed for half an hour educational programmes three days a week. However, as its programming timing grew, so did the control by the government, which found in DD a perfect tool for propaganda.

Whether the Emergency days during Prime Minister Indira Gandhi or other governments, the government of the day realized the importance of DD’s widening networks and its role in pushing the government agenda.

The Prasar Bharati Bill, paving the way for an autonomous DD and sibling All India Radio, was only notified and formalized in 1997.

Interestingly, DD saw its hey days in the eighties with programmes like ‘Hum Log’; ‘Buniyaad’, ‘Ramayana’, ‘Mahabharat’, 'Tamas’ and ‘Nukkad’, among many others, which not only highlighted India’s cultural traditions but also the ongoing societal changes. In fact, one wonders, whether a serial like `Tamas’, based on India’s partition, could be made today without somebody’s sentiments getting hurt and, in the bargain, getting canned.

Though DD (and AIR) are modeled on the BBC -- as famously described the then MIB Minister Jaipal Reddy in 1997 -- DD’s case is different. Despite being dependent on government funding, it is running low on financial resources with each successive government insisting that Prasar Bharati start generating its own resources, but not letting go of the control. But this is difficult when the network has to compete against more than 800 private channels that are not impeded in terms of programming and other initiatives like DD is.

No wonder the present Prasar Bharati CEO Jawhar Sircar said on DD’s birthday, "We need to look forward...renew our tryst with destiny."

Lines by a Canadian author, who penned ‘Morningstar’, aptly sum up the confused state of Prasar Bharati: “If you think you know what your purpose is, but can never seem to gain satisfaction from it, then it’s probably not the purpose you’re destined for.”

Latest Reads

http://www.indiantelevision.com/sites/drupal7.indiantelevision.co.in/files/styles/340x340/public/images/tv-images/2017/01/19/miss%20%281%29_1.jpg?itok=x_7NkjRo
Miss Universe 2016 to air on Zee Café live from Philippines

After the success of stunning events such as Miss World 2016 Live and Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show, Zee Café, the ultimate English GEC brings to its viewers yet another -global event, Miss Universe Live this January, 2017.

Television TV Channels English Entertainment
http://www.indiantelevision.com/sites/drupal7.indiantelevision.co.in/files/styles/340x340/public/images/tv-images/2017/01/19/naagin%20%281%29.jpg?itok=dmJsHL_0
Colors leads the BARC week 2 Hindi GEC (U+R) market

Naagin’s magic continued to make Colors the number one channel in Hindi GEC (U+R) even as Star Plus led the genre in the Urban Hindi GEC market. In Rural Hindi GEC market, Rishtey topped the chart again this week, according to the Broadcast Audience Research Council (BARC) all India data of week 2...

Television TV Channels Viewership
http://www.indiantelevision.com/sites/drupal7.indiantelevision.co.in/files/styles/340x340/public/images/tv-images/2017/01/19/NP%20Singh.jpg?itok=n3sTgiT5
Sony Pictures-Ten Sports deal cleared by CCI

MUMBAI: The Competition Commission of India (CCI) yesterday tweeted its approval to the proposed acquisition of the sports broadcasting business of Ten Sports by Sony Pictures Networks India. Acquisitions beyond a threshold need approval from CCI, which keeps a check on business practices across...

Television TV Channels Sports
http://www.indiantelevision.com/sites/drupal7.indiantelevision.co.in/files/styles/340x340/public/images/tv-images/2017/01/18/zindgi%20%281%29_0.jpg?itok=D5hGcSQt
Zee signs four TV-series deal with Eccho Rights

Zee Entertainment Enterprises Ltd. (ZEEL) has signed a deal for four blockbuster television series with the international content distributor, Eccho Rights.

Television TV Channels GECs
http://www.indiantelevision.com/sites/drupal7.indiantelevision.co.in/files/styles/340x340/public/images/tv-images/2017/01/18/shantanu%20%281%29.jpg?itok=amxTjuly
Shantanu Gangane leaves Times for Vuclip; will report to Vishal Maheshwari

Times Network’s Shantanu Gangane has resigned as the head of marketing and joined Vuclip as the CMO India. Gangane served his last day on 13 January in Times Network where he was heading the marketing of Times Now, ET Now and Zoom.

Television TV Channels People
http://www.indiantelevision.com/sites/drupal7.indiantelevision.co.in/files/styles/340x340/public/images/tv-images/2017/01/18/WION%20%281%29.jpg?itok=RBo0kW2A
Zee Media's WION opts for Dalet unified news solution

Computing and creative technologies aid workflow, storage and infrastructure solutions for all aspects of the media and content creation industry. IT solutions providers help with latest computing, networking, media hardware and software to provide the best output.

Television TV Channels News Broadcasting
http://www.indiantelevision.com/sites/drupal7.indiantelevision.co.in/files/styles/340x340/public/images/tv-images/2017/01/18/zee%20%281%29.jpg?itok=TkZwl1B7
Zee TV launches its first fiction show of 2017

Zee TV’s first fiction offering of 2017 - ‘Woh … Apna Sa’ is a unique concept that questions prevalent mindsets, pre-conceived notions and the over-generalizations that surround the institution of marriage, love and the eternal quest of finding one’s true soulmate.

Television TV Channels GECs
http://www.indiantelevision.com/sites/drupal7.indiantelevision.co.in/files/styles/340x340/public/images/tv-images/2017/01/17/Bomanbridge.jpg?itok=-F0FYgM0
CNN, EBS & Discovery buy factual programmes from Bomanbridge

MUMBAI: Bomanbridge Media, a Singapore-based content distribution and production agency , has announced sale of several significant factual programmes in the Asian region, including deals with Discovery Asia, EBS South Korea, and CNN Southeast Asia.

Television TV Channels Factual & Documentary
http://www.indiantelevision.com/sites/drupal7.indiantelevision.co.in/files/styles/340x340/public/images/tv-images/2017/01/17/GRB%20Entertainment-800x800.jpg?itok=Ts-XG-1q
Discovery acquires 'Untold Stories' & 'Cleveland Hustles' from GRB

MUMBAI: GRB Entertainment has announced sale to Discovery of their Latin America and US Hispanic channels. Both picked up several seasons of long-running GRB-produced medical show Untold Stories of the E.R. and Discovery Latin America acquired the new LeBron James series, Cleveland Hustles. Untold...

Television TV Channels English Entertainment

Latest News

Load More

Sign up for our Newsletter

subscribe for latest stories