With the dates for the Assembly elections in five states – Delhi, Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan, Chattisgarh and Mizoram – nearing, political parties have increased their poll activities and so have the news channels. Debates, talk shows, interviews, candidate profiles, political parties’ performance appraisals – the programme line-up is varied and exhaustive. exchange4media takes a peek at what to expect.
As the nation keenly watches what various parties are up to, everyone is turning to different media to get their daily dose of poll-related information. Election coverage is being taken to the level of infotainment and with so many options available on the news channels, viewers are the gainers.
Debates, talk shows, voters’ viewpoints, poll bulletins
Satish K Singh, Editor, Zee News, said, “We have four big on-ground shows in our show ‘Suno aur chuno’, where we will be roping in big faces of the states, while our anchors will take up issues of that state for debates. Another show, ‘Sarkar ki khoj’ will show the mood of the voters by interacting with them and finding out the voting trends.”
“There will a half hour election special daily bulletin at 6:30 pm called, ‘Singhasan Ka Semi Final’, which will cover the entire election process. This will be a kind of mini election referendum just before the final elections,” Singh added.
NDTV will have debate show ‘Crosstalk’, which will be moderated by Barkha Dutt and feature the country’s top politicians and renowned names from various fields. ‘For & Against’ will be an audience based show where NDTV looks at election issues that affect the people’s daily lives.
Commenting on the programme line-up for IBN 7, its Managing Editor, Ashutosh, said, “We will have two shows starting from the first week of November at 7:00 pm and 8:30 pm. One show will be covering the entire elections, looking at the performance of the political parties as well as the leaders. We will also be doing big debates in different capital cities. The other show will be on psephology.”
Sanjay Bragta, Executive Producer, Sahara Samay, informed that his channels would be doing weekend talk shows featuring politicians, where the studio audience would get to ask the politicians questions on various issues. There would also be debates.
“We are starting our election coverage from November 5 with ‘Raj Path Ka Semi Final’, where our reporters will be talking to people on the ground level in different states and in different segments. It will be a six-day programme of half an hour duration and will air on prime time,” Bragta added.
He further said, “On the election days, there will by a detailed coverage done by our reporters, present at different polling centres throughout the day.”
Sudhir Chaudhary, Editor & CEO, Live India, said, “Opinion polls, campaign trails, prominent speeches, genuine promises versus false promises, post mortem of manifestos, report cards of the prominent leaders reflecting their performance and the voice of the common man will be the highlights of our special programming. Live India will also have a set of polls and political experts, who will be present in the studio to simplify Indian politics.”
He added, “Our election programming will not be for experts but for voters. So, basically it will be ‘Election Simplified’. We will have a dedicated prime time slot for ‘Siyasat Ka Semi Final’, and will brand it as our flagship show on elections. There will be at least five new shows on elections reflecting different aspects of the politics of each state.”
Sharad Sahu, Marketing Head, Zee 24 Ghante, said, “An hour-long show called ‘Sawal Aapka Hai’ will be aired twice a week on Thursdays and Fridays at 4 pm. This programme aims to raise issues and questions of the common man before the political leaders. This programme will feature 5-8 political leaders, intellectuals and senior local journalists/ media persons.”
Sahu further said, “‘Kya Hua Tera Wada’ will be a half hour live show and air thrice a week at 7:30 pm. This programme will bring MLAs face to face with their voters. ‘Meri Awaaz Suno’ is another half hour show to be aired at 7:30 pm on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays, where reporters will find out the pulse of people and then profile a particular constituency taking into account all the aspects.”
“‘Singhsan Chhattisi’, a half hour live bulletin, will be aired six times a week. The programme will have packaged stories about the political happenings, rallies, campaigns, and colour stories,” Sahu said, adding,
Among the other poll-related shows are – ‘Campaign Trail’, ‘Battleground’, ‘Youngtantra’, ‘Kaun Banega Chief Minister’, and ‘Votenama’ (NDTV); ‘Vote Ka Sensex’, ‘Neta Zameen Par’, and ‘Sarkar Ki Khoj’ (Zee News); ‘Sawal Aapka Hai’, and ‘Tauba Ye Chunavi Chal’ (Zee 24 Ghante).