With Star News losing some of its sheen in the face of stiff competition, parent company Star India has asked New Delhi TV, to spruce up the news channel with more focus on the Hindi content. It has also been decided to phase out Good Morning India, a long-running programme on Star Plus by the month-end.
In a high-level meeting held in Delhi last week, attended amongst others by Star India chief executive Peter Mukerjea and NDTV’s Prannoy Roy, Star made a presentation identifying areas which needed attention and subsequently beefing up, keeping in mind new entrants in the news and current affairs genre of programming.
NDTV is yet to fix the time for launching its proposed entertainment channel, NDTV World, earlier slated to go on air by mid-2001. The channel will have 70 per cent of entertainment and 30 per cent of infotainment programming, barring news bulletins.
NDTV’s contract with Star to produce content for Star News runs through till March 2003, with a clause that it comes up for review in September-October. According to the agreement, if Star decides to pull out of the deal, then it has to pay NDTV about Rs 70 crore per year for the remaining period of the contract.