Things are set to move at a faster pace in BBC World’s India office with the channel planning various new initiatives for 2007. Narendhra Morar, Commissioning Editor, BBC World, was in India to take some of these initiatives forward.
Morar is in India to explore different properties in the long form programming mode to be aired on the channel. The focus of his visit is what BBC World can offer in 2007, with India’s 60th anniversary of Independence as one of the focal points.
Morar is quick to point two things – one, that being in the news, current affairs and information space, all programming that could be expected would continue to be in the factual realm, and second, that unlike 2-3 years back, when BBC World was creating Indian programming for Indians, they are now creating Indian programming for all the markets that BBC World operates in.
He said, “Everything has to have a global perspective. It is about making India relevant to the rest of the world and hence, creating programmes for not just India, but for the rest of the world.” Speaking more on BBC’s India plans, he said, “Our commitment to India is stronger than ever before and that is why I am here to meet production houses and directors to explore different properties that can be created for the channel.”
BBC World will continue to work with some of its older partners for the new shows that are planned for 2007, but in addition to that, talks are on with new production houses as well. Morar refrained from divulging much on the shows that have been scheduled. He, however, said, “There are at least two new series that will go on-air in 2007. Since this would be India’s 60th anniversary of Independence, we are working on some shows keeping that as the focus as well. The third aspect you will see would be more Asia centric news bulletins.”
He further said, “The new shows will contextualise Indian experience to the world. You will see more of India business programming as well.”
Morar gave a broad perspective on how these shows would add to BBC World’s proposition in India. He observed, “The channel is all about what is happening around you. I would say that news is the heart of the channel, but the body comprises much more than that. Long form shows, debates and discussions makes a channel like BBC World complete. News gives you the what, when and where, but it’s really shows like these that give you how and why.”
Explaining the judging factor of a good show, Morar said, “We clearly aren’t trying to be all things to everyone. We are a specific proposition in a specific niche to a specific audience and an English niche at that. We depend considerably on audience feedback and what we think about a property. And you can trust us to give the audience really something to look forward to next year. We are working very hard – after all, you are as good as your last programme.”