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- Pakistan shells border posts, hamlets in J&K; BSF jawans among 7 injured
- Sushma Swaraj raises issue of terrorism, H1-B with US Secretary of State
Hindi GECs launch more shows and create new prime-time slots in Feb
MUMBAI: The month of February saw more show launches on Hindi general entertainment channels (GECs) than the inaugural month of 2017. Star Plus and Zee TV also expanded original programming hours by introducing new prime-time slots.
Eight shows were added in February compared to five in the preceding month. In the fiercely contested prime-time slots, singing reality shows and coming-of-age dramas were launched.
Star Plus, Colors and Zee TV each launched two shows. &TV and Life OK launched one fiction show apiece.
Star Plus launched India’s first spin-off show ‘Dil Boley Oberoi’, based on its popular series ‘Ishqbaaz’, on 13 February. This was followed by the launch of romantic supernatural thriller ‘Koi Laut Ke Aya Hai’ on 25 February.
The launch of these two shows marked the introduction of two new prime-time spots for Star Plus: the 11-pm band and the Sunday 9-pm slot.
Due to the launch of ‘Dil Boley Oberoi’, which airs at 10.30 pm every Monday to Saturday, the channel shifted the time band of its finite series ‘P.O.W: Bandi Yuddh Ke’ to a new 11-pm slot. On the other hand, for the weekend show ‘Koi Laut Ke Aaya Hai’, the channel created a Sunday 9-pm slot.
‘Dil Boley Oberoi’ goes beyond the original characters in ‘Ishqbaaz’—Shivaay (Nakuul Mehta), Rudra (Leenesh Mattoo) and Omkara Oberoi (Kunal Jaisingh). It explores characters other than Shivaay (Nakuul Mehta) and Anika (Surbhi Chandna), and focuses on the relationship between Rudra and Omkara.
‘Koi Laut Ke Aya Hai’, which airs on Saturday and Sunday at 9 pm, tells the story of Gitanjali, who seems to be a simple and ordinary girl, hailing from a royal Rajasthani family. But her life is not as simple as its looks and is full of unusual and mysterious secrets.
Colors’ first launch of the year, ‘Dil Se Dil Tak’, airs every Monday to Friday at 10.30 pm. The show replaced the channel’s existing reality show ‘Bigg Boss 10’. Produced by Shashi Sumeet Production, the new-age drama deals with the issue of surrogacy and the intricacies of human relationships. The show also marks the comeback of actors Siddharth Shukhla and Rashmi Desai.
Colors also offered India its first live singing reality show ‘Rising Star’, which replaced ‘Bigg Boss 10 Weekend Ka Vaar’ at 9–10.30 pm on weekends. Launched on 4 February, the show, produced by Optimystix Entertainment, gives 79% voting rights to the audience and 21% to the panel of experts—Shankar Mahadevan, Monali Thakur and Diljit Dosanjh. The channel acquired the format rights to the reality show from Keshet International. The interactive format of the show has received positive response from its viewers.
Zee TV’s launch of a new-age romantic drama ‘Bin Kuch Kahe’ on 7 February saw the channel add a new prime-time slot at 6 pm. The channel shifted its existing show ‘Aji Sunte Ho’ from 6.30 pm to a new prime-time slot.
‘Bin Kuch Kahe’, which airs every Monday to Friday at 6.30 pm, is the story of a Punjabi mother who has single-handedly raised three daughters, each with a distinct personality of her own, and has hopes from each of them. The show follows the journey of the youngest daughter Myra Kohli, who dares to make her own rules.
With each GEC having its own singing reality show, Zee TV was the only channel straying away from the race. Zee finally launched its popular singing reality show, ‘Sa Re Ga Ma Pa Li’l Champs 6’, on 25 February. The non-fiction show, airing on weekends at 9 pm, clashes with Colors’ ‘Rising Star’.
‘Sa Re Ga Ma Pa Li’l Champs’ is based on the ‘back-to-school’ format, with the ‘L’il Champs’ representing their schools. The kids are mentored by Himesh Reshammiya, Javed Ali and Neha Kakkar. For the first time, the show has a panel of 30 jury members from the music fraternity. They closely assess the talents from the audition stage and help the mentors in the selection process.
Further revamping its content, Life OK launched yet another male-focused show titled ‘Har Mard Ka Dard’ on 14 February. Airing every Monday to Friday at 8 pm, the show replaced comedy drama ‘Bahu Hamari Rajni Kant’.
Produced by Deeya Singh of DJ’s Creative Unit and directed by popular actor Parmeet Sethi, the new sitcom revolves around a Punjabi family and is a male-inclusive show. The show revolves around a man who receives a supernatural power to understand the desires and wants of women. The show features Karan Singh Chhabra, Faisal Rashid, Vaishali Thakkar, Parmeet Sethi, Anita Kanwal, Paritosh Sand, RJ Mantra and Jinal Belani in leading roles.
Introducing its first offering of the year, &TV has launched the coming-of-age drama ‘Ek Vivah Aisa Bhi’ on 6 February. Airing every Monday to Friday at 7.30 pm, this show replaces the channel’s comedy series ‘Happy Hours’.
Produced by Nivedita Basu’s The House of Originals, the fictional drama revolves around a 24-year-old girl named Suman Parmar (Sonali Nikam) who lives with her mother-in-law Kalawati (Himani Shivpuri), two younger sisters-in-law and a four-year-old son. Upon her mother-in-law’s insistence and in a bid to support the family after her husband’s death, Suman pursues MBA and is juggling between home, her responsibilities and college. While studying, she receives a marriage proposal from her classmate Ranveer Mittal (Abhishek Malik), which turns her life upside down as she now has another mother-in-law Sindhura Mittal (Tassnim Sheikh) to manage.