India might be striving towards becoming a sporting powerhouse, but that can’t be said about the country’s national sports channel, DD Sports, which hasn’t kept pace with time.
This could change in 2017 as DD Sports is gearing up to offer new programmes, including films on the country’s Olympians.
“We had proposed the names of six Olympians and the government has cleared the idea,” a DD Sports spokesperson told HT. “We are in the process of acquiring non-exclusive rights of the players. We are not going for exclusive rights because of our budget. Like PV Sindhu is a star now and has many professional years ahead of her. We need to pay a huge amount to acquire her exclusive rights.”
With a proposed budget of R12 crore, DD Sports will commission films on Dhyan Chand (hockey), Leander Paes (tennis), Sindhu (badminton), PT Usha (athletics), MC Mary Kom (boxing) and the first Indian woman to win an Olympic medal, Karnam Malleswari (weightlifting).
There is a plan to produce five shows on sports as well.
“There could be changes as there is already a film on Mary Kom; but hers is an inspiring story. We are working on it. Hopefully, we will complete the project this year itself,” said the spokesperson.
The channel will also produce three episodes each on various disciplines in which experts will teach youngsters about the sport.
“These episodes will be like tutorials. In the episodes on hockey or cricket, one can learn about how to become a good goalkeeper, batsman or bowler,” he said.
The ministry will also provide technical and logistic support to the project.