New Delhi. Just a couple of days after Editors of leading TV news channels issued guidelines to “exercise restraint” in covering the news of Aishwarya Rai Bachchan’s delivery, a news channel has broken away and bought the “exclusive broadcast rights” for the event for a whopping 200 crore rupees. News One, a newly born news channel, has announced that it will broadcast the delivery live from Breach Candy hospital in Mumbai.
While the news has come as a delight of millions of fans and well-wishers of the first family of entertainment, it has set the cat among pigeons for the rest of the news channels as they are now clueless and restless to match the certain popularity of News One during the delivery, which is seen as the most awaited event by many after Sachin’s 100th international century.
Times Now, claiming to break the news for the first time, hosted a NewsHour debate to discuss “Are child birth telecast rights overpriced?” Arnab Goswami, Editor-in-Chief of Times Now, moderated the debate with 11 panelists and Suhel Seth, and concluded that the Aishwarya’s baby delivery rights were definitely overpriced. His view was supported by 2 of the total 3 panelists, who got chance to speak, thus forming a majority view.
NDTV has announced formation of an ethics committee under leadership of Group Editor Barkha Dutt that will submit its report if the decision of News One was unethical and whether the newly launched news channel should be suspended from the Broadcast Editors’ Association (BEA).
The reaction of CNN-IBN was most intriguing. While Sagarika Ghose announced that even her channel would broadcast the delivery live, though sometime next year, the channel’s Editor-in-Chief Rajdeep Sardesai appeared to be totally against such a move.
“Thousands of children die of malnutrition daily. No coverage. One celebrity child is born. Live coverage! Happens only in India. Gnight,” one of the five good-night tweets by Rajdeep read.
Apart from television channels, the decision by the news channel and the Bachchan family, who apparently sold the broadcast rights, has received criticism from Breach Candy too. Hospital management believes that some proceeds from the broadcast rights should have gone to the hospital trust to treat poor patients like Deshdrohi actor Kamaal Rashid Khan.
“Crap! I can buy hundreds of breach candy hospitals,” KRK, as Kamaal Rashid Khan is popularly known, tweeted his view.
Not only KRK, the decision by the Bachchan family has also upset others in the entertainment industry.
“Bachchans should have roped in other celebrities, who could have appeared on national television while paying a visit to the hospital. This could have increased the value of broadcast rights and brought business to the industry,” a Bollywood trade analyst argued, “After all, this concept is not original. Aamir Khan had broadcast a child delivery live on webcam in 3 Idiots.”
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