Star Jalsha begins to entertain in Middle East

Rebecca Hawkes | 08-03-2011

Middle East pay-TV platform Arab Digital Distribution (ADD) has added Bengali general entertainment channel Star Jalsha to its Pehla bouquet of South Asian fare.

The channel, which launched originally in India in 2008, has a variety of popular content including talk shows, reality TV and comedy – which have drawn strong audience ratings in West Bengal. It will join other Star channels, Star Plus, Star One, Star Gold, Star News and Channel [V] India, which are already carried across the Middle East on Pehla.

“This [channel launch] re-enforces our commitment to driving innovation and production quality in Bengali programming for over three million Bangla viewers who are present in the Middle East,” said Sumo Dutta, head of Star, Middle East, Africa and Pakistan. “Looking ahead, we look forward to working more closely with ADD to bring subscribers even more TV choice from our highly rated bouquet of South Asian channels.”

Star Jalsha’s televised events, such as Telly Shamman, Star Jalsha awards, Mega Jalsha and Mon mane na concert have, the broadcaster claims, become instant hits for family viewing and “broke all records on Bengali television.” Other shows featured on Star Jalsha include Ghosh & Co, I Laugh U, Maa and Bou Katha Kou.

The addition to ADD’s line-up follows the satellite TV operator’s recent announcement that it is providing live coverage in the Middle East of the ongoing ICC Cricket World Cup, via its CricOne channel on the Pehla and FirstNet premium satellite bouquets. CricOne is also available in the UAE via Etisalat’s E-Vision and Du packages, and in Qatar via Qtel’s Mosaic TV offer.