The Rs 2,500-crore Delhi-based Senior Group of Companies engaged in the real estate business is launching a 24-hour Hindi news and current affairs channel. The channel, christened S1, is promoted by
group company, Senior Media Ltd, headed by Vijay Dixit, chairman of the Senior Group.
Noted print and television journalist Santosh Bhartiya, former editor of Hindi news weekly Chauthi Duniya and former advisor of Jain TV, has been roped in as CEO and Editor-in-Chief of the news channel.
Speaking to exchange4media, Bhartiya said that S1 news and current affairs channel have got uplinking permission and it will be launched in December. The channel, he said, will be beamed through the ISRO satellite and Senior Media Ltd is putting up its own earth station in Delhi for uplinking.
Bhartiya has already appointed the programming and distribution heads for the channel but refused to divulge their names. All that he would say is that the upcoming news channel with a countrywide news gathering network will be different from the existing news channels -- very much in line with the philosophy of the Senior Group that is revolutionizing the shopping mall scene in the country with unique and niche concepts.
"Today news channels are making mockery of breaking news. Even the word exclusive is much abused in the TV news domain. We'll not join this mad race of broadcasting unconfirmed stories in order to be first with the news, and later contradicting one's own stories. Nevertheless, we will go beyond mere reporting of press conferences and day's developments and do investigative stories," said Bhartiya, who is credited with doing investigative stories for 'News Line', India's first news and current affairs show on Doordarshan in the 80s produced by Anand Bazaar Patrika Group and anchored by MJ Akbar.
In order to give S1 a fresh look, Bhartiya is looking for "fresh and intelligent" news anchors. S1 will not be part of any C&S distribution bouquet though it has not ruled out the possibility of joining the DTH platform.