Pakistan President Pervez Musharraf overshadowed Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on Indian TV news channels last week, getting thrice the attention on prime time bulletins, according to a survey.
Between Sep 21-28—the week when Musharraf released his memoirs in New York—six New Delhi-based Hindi news channels devoted 378 minutes of their prime-time bulletins to the Pakistani president against 114 minutes to Manmohan Singh, the survey by the Centre for Media Studies (CMS) found.
Of the six, NDTV India devoted 164 minutes to Musharraf against just four minutes to the Indian prime minister.
The other channels surveyed were DD News, Zee News, Sahara Samay, Star News and Aaj Tak.
Overall, the Doordarshan news channels devoted 94 minutes to Manmohan Singh against 35 minutes to Musharraf.
On an average, Musharraf got 10 minutes of prime time coverage a day per channel against hardly three minutes for Manmohan Singh.
"No Indian prime minister would have ever got such a coverage in the Pakistani news media as Musharraf often gets in India,' a CMS release said on Tuesday.
On Sep 25, the day Musharraf released In The Line of Fire: A Memoir, the six channels devoted 227 minutes to him, and 102 minutes in the four days preceding this.
This included Musharraf's meeting with Manmohan Singh on the sidelines of the Non-Aligned Summit in Havana and the Pakistani leader's meeting with US President George W Bush in New York, the CMS survey said.
Manmohan Singh also lost out on his birthday—Sep 26—to veteran actor Dev Anand, who was born the same day.
Dev Anand got 34 minutes in the prime-time bulletins of the six Hindi channels against two minutes and 30 seconds of Manmohan Singh. While NDTV India devoted 24 minutes to the actor, it ignored the prime minister.
Doordarshan was the only saving grace for Manmohan Singh, giving him a minute and 50 seconds against 30 seconds to Dev Anand, even as Zee devoted 30 seconds to the prime minister against seven minutes to the actor.
"Interestingly, both Aaj Tak and Star News did not cover either of the two birthdays in their prime-time news bulletins," CMS noted.