AP minister's family may take over Zee Telugu news channel

Last Updated: Tue, Sep 11, 2012 19:40 hrs

Zee News Limited may not shut down its Telugu news channel 'Zee 24 Gantalu' as announced by the company last month. Sources close to the development said Zee had accepted an offer to run the channel by a political family from Andhra Pradesh.

According to the information, Pradesh Congress Committee president Botcha Satyanarayana's family would acquire close to 70 per cent equity in the channel while Zee would hold the rest. The company is yet to make any announcement in this regard.

“Yes, my brother is joining the news channel management,” said Botcha Satyanarayana when asked about the said deal. However, the minister added it was his brother's decision and he was not involved in the matter.

Zee News Limited officials were not immediately available for comment. The minister's brother Satish and the management of Zee 24 Gantalu have an existing relationship wherein the news channel is being distributed on the Citivision cable network across the state. Citivision is owned by Satish.

On August 18, Zee News Limited had issued a public notice stating its Telugu news channel would stop telecast from September 20. Though the company did not attribute any reason, company sources, however, maintained that operational losses arising out of stiff competition in the overcrowded Telugu news channel market had forced the management to take this call.

The company is said to have invested around Rs 100 crore in the news channel.

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