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Zee Media to launch Urdu news channel on 1 July

MUMBAI: Zee Media Corporation Ltd (ZMCL) is planning to launch an Urdu news channel on 1 July. The channel will be called Zee Salaam.

Incidentally, ZMCL’s sister concern Zee Entertainment Enterprises Ltd (ZEEL) also runs an Urdu infotainment channel of the same name.

ZEEL is planning to shut down Zee Salaam to allow ZMCL to launch it as an Urdu news channel.

“We are launching Urdu news channel Zee Salaam on 1 July. Earlier, it was an infotainment channel. We are making it a news channel. We are already running bulletins on the channel,” ZMCL CEO regional channels Jagdish Chandra told TelevisionPost.com.

Zee Salaam is already on several direct-to-home (DTH) platforms like Dish TV, Tata Sky, Reliance Digital TV and Airtel Digital TV. It is also available on leading cable TV platforms.

ZEEL houses Essel Group’s entertainment business, while the news broadcast business is vested with ZMCL.

ZMCL has already got the approval of the Ministry of Information & Broadcasting (MIB) to launch the channel. The company is in the process of hiring journalists for the channel.

The licence for the Urdu news channel was issued in February under the name Zee Urdu. ZMCL subsequently got it renamed Zee Salaam, while ZEEL got the Zee Salaam licence renamed &Prive HD.

ZEEL has been pulling the plug on several unpopular channels. Recently, it decided to shut down Zindagi and shift the entire content to its VoD platform OZEE. In the last few years, it has shut down Zee Trendz, 9X, Zee Premiere, Zee Smile, ETC Punjabi and Zee Jagran.

Recently, ZMCL had rebranded India 24×7 as Zee Hindustan while Zee Purvaiya was renamed Zee Bihar/Jharkhand. Before that, Zee Marudhara was renamed Zee Rajasthan News.

ZMCL has a cluster of news, current affairs and regional news channels, which includes Zee News, Zee Business, WION, India 24×7, Zee Punjab Haryana Himachal, Zee Madhya Pradesh Chhattisgarh, Zee 24 Taas, 24 Ghanta, Zee Kalinga News, Zee Purvaiya and Zee Rajasthan News. It also includes the newspaper DNA.