1. “Taaza Maal”
2. “Saas Ki Makkari Bahu Par Bhari”
3. “Daal nahi Galti”
4. “Safaid Saudagar”
5. “Zardari ka ishara hi kaafi hai”
6. “Insaaf Ka Zulm”
7. “Karachi valoun ko kaun kar raha hai shikar”
8. “Amreeka Ki Ghulam Hukumat”
9. “Chulbuli adaoun vali Priyanka Chopra tees baras ki hogayeen”
10. “Maut kay saudagaran nay mazeed 11 gharoun ko ujaad diya”
If one skims through the above news titles/reports/tickers and guess which news channel or for that matter which TV channel was churning out these inanities one would probably think that it is none other than Hero TV, which has suddenly attained notoriety due to its upcoming host of Ramzan transmission, Veena Malik (a savvy move by the channel for viewers would surely tune in to see Ms Malik and abandon the boring Mullahs, Mullanis, cricketers and celebs turned pseudo-Islamic scholars who will flood the channels this Ramzan).
But the fact of the matter is that except for three, the remaining 7 are all from mainstream Urdu TV channels. (Answers are at the end of this blog). Before Hero TV, an infotainment channel was launched on June 5, 2012, by the Express Group with its tagline dikha dey sab kuch, nearly all the channels were/are already focusing their news stories, bulletins on controversies, scandals and celebrities and were literally showing everything. From presentation to content to voiceovers to graphics, all the channels are already doing what Hero TV is currently doing. All of it is geared towards sensationalism and increasing anxiety levels of an already stressed out citizenry. Of course Hero TV has taken it to a higher and over-the-top level: the lightning strike graphics that are inflicted every few seconds, the frozen close-ups, the screaming voice-overs etc.
Here is an ‘in-depth analysis” of two of Hero TV’s shows:
Baji Sab Janti Hai
Astrological program so commonplace in all the channels is shown in Hero TV as Baji Sab Janti Hai. Attired in a gypsy-like head-gear, the host Baji is someone whom you just can’t take seriously. For instance when talking about a certain zodiac sign she says in a sing-song high-pitched voice, “Ghiza main chicken badha do, gulabi rang ka dupatta pehen lo….” Then she gets a call from Khairpur from a man (we never get to hear his voice) who is concerned about his marriage, so she takes a plate and writes his name, his mother’s name, his date of birth, pours something on the plate, swirls it and topples the imaginary contents into a handi while a shadi ka tadka is being made!!!! (I did not make this up, I swear). But what is refreshing that while other astrologers in other channels take themselves too seriously, Baji doesn’t and so her show is a fun watch (if you are interested in watching her show, she comes every night at midnight)
Super Khaas Khabar
Tagline: Super Andaaz Main
This news bulletin is presented number wise. So last night (July 17) at number 9 was the khabar/news Abba ki siyasi inning khatam toh beta shuru. This related to former PM Yousuf Raza Gilani’s son contesting his vacant seat in a by-election. At number 11 was Rana ko baldiyati ki fikar khanay lagi. This referred to Punjab’s Law Minister Rana Sanaullah and the local body elections and at number 14 was Batman nay aakar vaapas dhoom macha dee, referring to the upcoming film The Dark Knight Rises. After watching this bulletin, I felt that more or less this is how our mainstream channels present their news, hence I reiterate my point, Hero TV is an old wine in a new bottle.
1. Oxygene 2. Hero TV 3. CNBC 4. Hero TV 5. Geo 6. Dawn 7. Hero TV 8. Aaj News 9. Duniya 10. Samaa