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FTA kids channel Maha Cartoon TV to debut on Freedish on 1 Nov
MUMBAI: India’s first free-to-air (FTA) kids channel Maha Cartoon TV will launch on 1 November on Freedish, the free DTH platform of pubcaster Prasar Bharati.
Maha Cartoon TV is already available on small cable TV networks in the Hindi-speaking market (HSM). The distribution footprint of the channel will be increased in the next few months.
The channel is being launched by Teleone Consumers Product, a teleshopping company owned by the DV Group of Companies. Teleone already owns and operates a teleshopping channel, Teleshopping, and an FTA Hindi movie channel, Maha Movie. This will be the third channel from the company.
The Hind-language channel is targeted at people aged 4–14. The content will include localised animated shows as well as international acquired content. The company is also producing content through in-house production team.
The key shows on the channel include ‘Mooshak Gungun’, ‘Bal Chanakya’, ‘Panchtantra Stories’ and ‘Ciko’. The channel will also feature foreign content dubbed in Hindi besides movies for kids.
‘Mooshak Gungun’ is the Indian adaption of the classical cat and mouse chase show. ‘Bal Chanakya’ is based on an Indian kid with a sharp mind and a strong ability to overcome various obstacles with ease and composure. ‘Panchtantra Stories’ will be a compilation of short stories of the Panchtantra, showcasing India’s cultural heritage, wildlife and ecosystem. ‘Ciko’ is a knowledge-based series that will give viewers information about interesting facts.
Apart from cartoon series, the channel will air interactive and educative programming. Towards this end, the channel will have a techno commercial show, ‘Techno Kids’, aimed at harnessing kids’ imagination and making great gizmos from day-to-day items for use in homes.
The FTA channel is a result of two years of planning on various aspects of creation and compilation of programming for kids.
The company said that it saw an opportunity in the FTA kids. Almost all kids channels are paid and mainly targeted at urban geography.
DV Group CMD Darshan Singh said, “I relate to this audience as I come from rural area. I think this channel will be a great gift to rural kids, who do not have access to quality kids content. The channel is aimed at providing entertainment and knowledge to kids.”
DV Group MD and founder director Vishvajeet Sharma added, “Today we have more than 20 pay kids channels but not one FTA kids channel. There is a huge opportunity in the FTA kids space, as kids form a large chunk of viewership base in rural India.”