Sure, Star, Colors, Zee are the top GECs.

Sure, most viewers are glued to these channels 24X7.

Sure, soaps on these channels have good ratings.

Sure, the moolah raked in by all the channels could run a bank.

Sure, all the action is happening only on these driver channels.

So what’s the point I am trying to make with such obvious facts?

Though I may belong to the minority community who watch the odd channel
I think it’s only right that people know that niche channels have been offering
such varied fare it can put the so-called mainstream channels to shame. It
could be enlightening to know that besides the run-of-the-mill shows viewers are habituated to there is so much more happening on parallel channels that they could tilt the balance in their favour. I am told last week Bidaai had a high rating and so did Pavitra Rishta and even Balika Vadhu. This can be attributed to a death, some emotional drama, and some more twists and turns in the on-going soap. Does this make for qualitative viewing? Sure, interests vary but other options have to be explored before making a choice.

This week saw the opening of two new shows- Papad Pol (SAB) and Chaand Chupa Badal Mein (Star Plus). One on a top ranking channel and the other on a channel almost there! Papad Pol –Shahbuddin Rathod Ki Rangeen Duniya is based on the writings of Gujarat’s legendary writer, comedian and humorist Shahbuddin Rathod.

The show while making us laugh also makes us empathise with the situations
we face in our daily lives. It captures the spirit of the common man and passes a social message at the end of each episode. The show is clean, looks promising and has some good acting.

Chaand Chupa Badal Mein is about a simple middle-class girl who is resisting hard falling in love! She does not even realise romance exists in this world. Of course, there will be a hero and how the story will eventually progress is not my concern at the moment. The visuals appear attractive as it is shot in picturesque Simla. Of course ultimately it is the story that will sell. And for that it’s too soon to comment.

All I can add as the last word is that though the fare offered by a less popular channel may be more appealing than what the most popular ones dish out on a regular basis, simply because the latter seems to be well marketed. And let me also add that when I say this I only mean that all channels, general or niche, need to co-exist and need patronage as well. Come on, guys, every show deserves a good chance in the sun before we dismiss them off by the flick of our remote.