Asianet Communications plans to launch the first Malayalam news channel by the end of this year. Originally Asianet had intended to wind up its second channel Asianet Global and have a new one fully devoted to entertainment, but has now shelved the proposal.
As per the new plan, Asianet Global is to be rechristened as Asianet News. It would have news programmes from 6 am to 10 pm after which there would be a variety of entertainment programmes. There would be news bulletins every hour. This was to cater to the large NRI audience in West Asia and Europe. A news-based morning show is also on the cards.
The company was toying with the idea of a news channel idea for a long time. It was with this intention that Asianet Global was launched, there were very few news-based programmes which later gave way to film-based entertainment ones. But with the channel not fetching returns, the management decided to go in for an entertainment channel called ‘Asianet Plus’. Midway through the process, there was a rethink and the concept of a news channel was revived.
The test telecast is already on. Though the launch was supposed to take place on December 5, sources said it would could be delayed by a few days.