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Broadcast Worldwide to launch Tara Bengali on 28 April

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Broadcast Worldwide, the company promoted by former Star TV and DD chief R. Basu, is to launch its Bengali channel on 28 April at a glittering fashion show in Calcutta. The channel is headed by B.M. Guha, a former Star TV senior executive and a Basu confidante.

The channel promises excellent cultural content and is apparently going to shake up the Bengali channel market. But one question that has not been resolved at the time of launch is who is going to distribute the channel.

The channel - which has got backing to the tune of 5 per cent of its equity from News Corp's Rupert Murdoch, apart from other cash-rich Indian investors - was earlier in parlays with Star TV to get onto its digital platform. The memorandum of understanding between the two has however yet to be signed.

Sources indicate that Basu is not happy about the terms of the agreement and is hence trying to get the best deal out of Star TV and could even be open to talks with Sony Entertainment Television. Star TV chief Peter Murkerjea will have to tread carefully if he does not want to lose what could be a prosperous four language channel bouquet - Gujarati, Bengali, Punjabi and Marathi - from slipping out of his hands.

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