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MUMBAI: DD Sahyadri is set to make hay from the first mega scale commissioned programming from Prasar Bharati to hit the terrestrial small screen in a long time.

With a budget of Rs 39 lakh (Rs 3.9 million) from the Prasar Bharati, the channel has roped in eminent theatre and film directors from Maharahstra including Sachin Pilgaonkar, Pratima Kulkarni, Sumitra Bhave and Kranti Kanade to make the half hour stories that will be telecast from 24 May, every Monday at 7.30 pm. The ambitious Prasar,Bharati project envisages bringing classic short stories from 13 Indian languages to the small screen. The Marathi episodes are later to be dubbed in Hindi and shown on the national network, says Mumbai station director Mukesh Sharma.

Sharma also intends to reap additional revenue out of the initiative by dubbing into Marathi, stories created in other regional languages as well as converting the stories into DVDs that can be sold internationally. Converting the Marathi stories into other languages will add more revenue, he says.

Among the titles picked for conversion to the small screen are the popular Dhindh by Shankar Patil (made by Sachin Pilgaonkar), Shantaram's Parangada made by Ajay Phansekar, and Vidyadhar Pundalik's Akherchi Ratra, made by Sumitra Bhave and Sunil Sukhtankar. Three of the titles have been produced in house, by DD staffers Madhavi Kulkarni, Sharan Birajdar and Meena Gokhale Pansare. Sharma says apart from the additional revenue the shows will bring, having a panel of eminent directors will not only add value to the programming but will also be of lasting archival value to Doordarshan.

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