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DD's longest running 'Kalyani' health campaign enters fifth year

Written by: Staff
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New Delhi, Nov 22 (UNI) 'Kalyani', the longest running health campaign of Doordarshan, has entered the fifth year of its telecast with Prasar Bharati and the Health Ministry signing an agreement here today, extending the popular programme by yet another year.

The MoU, signed here between Prasar Bharati CEO Brijeshwar Singh and Union Health Secretary Naresh Dayal, will fetch for the public broadcaster an amount of Rs 25 crore.

The programme, which has already entered its fifth year with effect from June, has so far been able to procure business worth Rs 100 crore from the Health Ministry.

'Kalyani', the phenomenally popular weekly health magazine programme, is the longest in-house production of Doordarshan and is being telecast four times a week on 21 DD centres in nine states -- Asom, Bihar, Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand, Madhya Pradesh, Orissa, Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh and Uttaranchal.

The programme is telecast on Monday and Thursday with a repeat telecast on Tuesday and Friday between 1830 and 1900 hrs. More than 3750 episodes of the programme have been produced at nine state capitals since May 2002 when it was launched.

''The programme has achieved unparalleled impact among viewers, health workers, service providers and policy makers. Alongside, it has created many firsts in public service broadcasting by using television as a tool to create awareness and behaviour change rather then using the medium as an end,'' Mr Singh said.

Pointing out that in a country like India where health spend is very low, he said programme like 'Kalyani' had been disseminating messages in entertaining formats on major health concerns of the country among more than 550 million people in a most cost-effective manner.

''The Kalyani programme has demonstrated that media can actually effect behaviour changes, which is evident from the creation of around 2000 'Kalyani Clubs' in rural and semi-urban areas having a otal membership of over 40,000 members.'' He said the programme, whose popularity in rural areas rivals those of cricket matches, has bridged the gap between policy-makers and people at grassroots level, closing gaps in health services and focusing attention on corrupt practices.

''No wonder that in Betul district of Madhya Pradesh, malaria tablet is demanded as 'Kalyani' tablets,'' he pointed out.

Showering accolades on the programme, Health Secretary Naresh Dayal said 'Kalyani' had a snowballing impact, which had been exemplified in the setting up of 'Kalyani Clubs'.

''The programme has become an effective mechanism for spreading health-related messages at the grassroots level, and it deserves to be given all encouragement,'' he added.

Ms Usha Bhasin, producer of the programme, said the health campaign on DD had become the biggest source of information on disease-specfic programme.

UNI/SKS PA DB1846

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