Animal Planet, a wildlife channel from the Discovery Networks stable, has dedicated an hour-long programming for Indian wildlife. The channel will launch a dedicated India series, christened Yeh Mera India, to celebrate Indian nature and wildlife on August 15.
The 30-part theme-based series will have episodes focusing on various aspects of Indian fauna, including tigers, elephants and rhinos, among others. Interestingly, the channel will not highlight the negatives of the Indian forest and wildlife. The new time band associated with the awareness of the wildlife conditions in India has an original programme line up of 26 hours.
To promote the programme, the channel has produced an anthem, a three minute multi-lingual music video composed and performed by renowned music personalities such as Lesle Lewis, Shaan, Mathangi and Monali.
Rahul Johri, senior vice-president and general manager, South Asia, Discovery Networks Asia Pacific, says, "The anthem will be made viral on the internet. The negotiations are on with the radio channels too for the anthem placements. The property will also be heavily promoted on the eight channels of the network."
He adds that though the channel is will not focus on the negativities in the Indian wildlife scenario, the relevant facts and figures will be mentioned. The primary focus of the show will be to create more awareness about Indian zoology.
The show targets the niche audience of the channel. Few episodes of the show will be hosted by Valmik Thapar, renowned author and wildlife conservationist, while few others would be presented by Jeff Corwin, an American nature and wildlife conservationist.
The 30-part series will have about 10 older episodes including Wildest India, Land of the Tigers, Tiger - Spy in the Jungle and Jeff Corwin's Experience; and new episodes such as Nagarhole, Rhino Story, Natural World, Tiger's Fortress, Ladakh - A forbidden wilderness, Tigers next door and Swimming Elephants, among others.
Discovery Networks had announced an India-centric show at the start of this year, too. The series, India Wild Encounters, ran from January 26 to February 26. Later, the frequency was decreased to a weekly telecast of the show. The channel has also hosted single episodes of other India-centric shows such as Great Cats of India.
The channel claims that the offering is an attempt to create an association between India's rich wildlife epitomising its freedom and paying a tribute to their vivacity, thus helping in its preservation.