News channels gear for Delhi election judgment day

MUMBAI: Over 67 per cent of Delhi’s voting population reached polling booths to register their opinion and celebrate the festival of democracy. Many exit polls unanimously predicted Aam Aadmi Party’s (AAP) victory over Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and Congress. But all speculations and predictions will be over on 10 February, 2015 when the results are declared.


Will it be ‘Abki baar Bedi sarkar’ or ‘Paach saal Kejriwal’ or will Ajay Makan surprise everyone? Will it be a hung assembly or has Delhi voted for a stable government? The entire country will find answers to all the questions via the Indian media and its exclusive coverage.   


Commenting on the judgment day offerings, NDTV 24x7 managing editor Manika Raikwar Ahirwal said, “Prannoy Roy, Dorab Sopariwala and Shekhar Gupta will bring the Delhi Assembly election results to viewers, with live coverage from 7:30 am onwards on NDTV 24x7's And The Winner Is. Minute by minute updates, easy to read graphics and experts will be on air till the final results are known. Senior anchors Barkha Dutt, Vikram Chandra, Sreenivasan Jain, Nidhi Razdan and Vishnu Som along with NDTV’s wide range of experienced reporters will bring every aspect of this election to the audience. We will also have a special show from 8 - 10 pm discussing the impact and fallout of the results.”


As for Times Now, the channel has named its special coverage Result Day live. A total of 50 reporters will be deployed on the field to cover judgment day developments. The panel will have Arati Radhika Jerath, Ajoy Kumar Ghosh, Sankarshan Thakur, Siddharth Varadarajan, Neerja Chowdhury, Sunil Alagh, Hartosh Singh Bal, Saba Naqvi and R Rajagopalan. Times Now editor in chief Arnab Goswami told, “Every election the viewership soars for Times Now. We are the number one choice. All year. And of course on Election Day.”


IBN18 Network CEO Avinash Kaul said, “It is a huge event and we will have exclusive non-stop coverage. We will have a panel of dignitaries and we will discuss every development.”


Network18’s coverage will commence at 6 am on 10 February. CNN-IBN’s special programme is called Mission Delhi: Counting Day Coverage, whereas the IBN7 show is called Dilli Mein Iss Baar Bedi Sarkar?


An ABP spokesperson asserted, “Sophisticated graphics will be created to analyse the trends and results. We have deployed a reporter in each constituency; reporters will also be there in various party offices to track developments.” 


BAG Network chairperson and MD Anuradha Prasad said, “The telecast will start at 7 am and we will have panel discussions throughout the day. We will have 26 reporters scattered in various parts of Delhi, who will update us with all the on-field developments.” 


Besides the technocracy, elections play a vital role in generating revenue. News channels bring in the best of graphic designers and animators to make their show look as exquisite as possible.


When enquired about the commercial interest, Madison COO Kartik Lakshminarayan said, “Election in India is a huge event and news channels cover it with esteemed sophistication. Better presentation attracts bigger brands.”


Helios Media managing director Divya Radhakrishnan opined, “Election is the biggest marketed event of news channels. Delhi assembly election is always rated over other assembly elections and the highly poised contest between AAP and BJP has made it more interesting.”


Platinum Media CEO Basabdutta Chowdhury added, “The ad rates in news channel sees maximum hike on counting day. The build up to the election consists of numerous pre-polls and opinion polls and many brands ties up for that.”


Sources in media buying fraternity revealed that the news channels could see a 200 to 300 per cent hike in ad rates during election coverage depending on their creative offerings. “The hike is maximum on counting day as the entire country tunes in to news channels to get updated,” concluded media experts.

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