A Tribute To J. V. Raman, Doordarshan’s News Reader



DEORIA – UTTAR PRADESH – INDIA           SEPTEMBER 19, 2014           11.45 P. M.

Doordarshan News Reader J. V. Raman

Doordarshan News Reader J. V. Raman

It is sad that news of the demise of J. V. Raman reached me late. For numerous television watchers of this generation, the name J. V. Raman does not carry any familiarity. But for generation of my age, he was a household name. Unlike the cacophony and know-all news anchors of today, JV Raman was one of the sober voices in the news industry.

He died of kidney failure on August 7, 2014 at Sant Parmanand Hospital in Civil Lines, New Delhi. He was 68. Prayer meeting was held on August 19 at the Freemasons Hall, down a small bylane of Janpath market. Among those who attended were his family members, friends and colleagues from DD as well as Rajdhani College, Delhi University, where he taught Economics for over 44 years.


Raman started his TV career after a friend advised him to go for an audition that fetched him a place in DD as an English news reader. Soon, he switched to Hindi news reading, and continued the freelance assignment until the late 90s. His impeccable diction never betrayed the fact that he was from Andhra Pradesh.

Shammi Narang, who read news with him for about 20 years or so, remembers Raman as a guide and mentor. “When I read my first bulletin in 1982, he said, ‘Narang, you should be thankful that you are associated with Hindi.

A thorough professional, he would often work with his producers to improvise on the script and style. Sarla Maheshwari, a colleague and news reader, who remembers watching Raman’s bulletins as a child, found an understanding friend in him when she started working with DD. She recalls how Raman volunteered to fill up for her for one of her bulletins as Maheshwari was away for her father-in-law’s operation.

Ved Prakash, another news reader who still freelances with DD, was often told that he copied Raman’s style. “He was my guru, so I followed him,” says Prakash, “An era of TV news has ended with his demise.”

But news reading was not Raman’s only passion. He was involved with a theatre group Abhiyan until last year.

A bachelor, Raman lived in a joint family in Delhi. During his last days, his sister JV Lakshmi Kalyani was with him.

At a time when viewers couldn’t switch channels because there was only one, when the infuriating ” ……..Rookawat ke liye khed hai …….” was the most common one-liner on the small screen and when streets were deserted on Sunday because everybody was watching the evening movie, he read out news on Doordarshan.

He was from the older, less aggressive breed; much like family friend who dropped by for a fireside chat every night. When he read out news, it was like he was shaking hands with you.

Apart from J. V. Raman, Tejeshwar Singh, Salma Sultan, Neethi Ravindran, Shammi Narang, Manjari Joshi, Rini Khanna, Komal GB Singh, Usha Albuquerque, Ramu Damodaran, Sunit Tandon, Gitanjali Aiyar, Minu were the other famous news readers of that bygone golden era. Every newsreader had a distinctive style. You could close your eyes and make out who was reading the news.

In those days, in Spoken English classes, students would be instructed to listen, and if possible record on tape, the English news read out by Tejeshwar Singh, Neethi Ravindran and others. “Listen to their diction. Try to speak the same way,” teachers said. Students obeyed.

The pay packet wasn’t much. But DD news readers were among the most recognisable faces in the country.

In the early Nineties, with the onset of satellite television, Doordarshan lost its exclusivity. With competition, it was time to evolve. By the late Nineties, the news readers were required to upgrade themselves as news anchors. Their new job profile required them to be on the ball with national and international politics. “Not everybody was able to adapt. Consequently, some fell through the cracks. Others had by then developed new pursuits.

In the early 1970s, news readers had as many followers as their counterparts now. Perhaps more, as the uncluttered news screens — without the persistent ticker — had more space for news anchors. J. V. Raman belonged to that era. That era ends with his demise.


Vidur Acting Institute Logo


On behalf of all the students and staff of VIDUR Acting Institute , VIDUR Editing Studio , VIDUR Club and VIDUR Merchandise, I offer my heartfelt condolences to the family of J. V. Raman.

May God bless them with peace and give them strength to bear the loss.


[ Some portions of this blog is taken from THE DOORDARSHAN DIVAS – The Times of India – January 06, 2008 by Avijit Ghosh & A TRIBUTE TO DOORDARSHAN’S J. V. RAMAN – Indian Express – August 20, 2014. I express my gratitude.  ]












Vidur’s Telly Tales – 10 : 20 Years of ZEE TV

MUMBAI – MAHARASHTRA – INDIA           NOVEMBER 16 , 2012           00.35 A.M.

I came to Mumbai in 1989 . It was October 1989 precisely . That era belonged to Doordarshan a.k.a. DD . Fresh from the success of serials like ;  ” Ramayan ” and ” Mahabharat “ , DD almost became omni – present . It’s all – pervading reach in India was unparalleled . For audience , it dished out various other popular programmes but there was clamour for more . Zee TV was the first to fill the void .


Zee TV's very first logo used from 1 October 1...

Zee TV’s very first logo used from 1 October 1992 until 16 June 2000. Wikipedia)



Zee TV's second logo used in India from 17 Jun...

Zee TV’s second logo used in India from 17 June 2000 until 26 March 2005. Wikipedia)



Zee TV's third logo used from 27 March 2005 un...

Zee TV’s third logo used from 27 March 2005 until 18 June 2011. Wikipedia)



Zee TV's fourth logo unveiled on 19 June 2011....

Zee TV’s fourth logo unveiled on 19 June 2011. Wikipedia)


It was India’s first satellite channel . It was launched in October 1992 with 3 hours of prime time programming . It started with some immensely popular non – fiction shows .

SAANP SEEDI [ 1992 ] : This show was hosted by Mohan Kapoor . It was based on the famous game for kids .

ANTAKSHIRI [ 1993 ] : This show was hosted by Anu Kapoor along with Renuka Shahane and some others .

KHANA KHAZANA [ 1993 ] : Its 15 years run is unparalleled .

AAP KI ADALAT [ 1993 ] : This Rajat Sharma anchored show was a trend setter . It was a must – watch on Sundays .

SA RE GA MA PA [ 1995 ] : It is one of the Zee TV’s longest running show . Its several seasons spread over almost 18 years .

DANCE INDIA DANCE [ 2009 ] : In the last 3 years it became one of the biggest and most succesful non – fiction show .

INDIA’S MOST WANTED : It is the new non – fiction show of Zee TV .

Apart from above mentioned non – fiction shows , Zee TV became a trend – setter with some of its fiction shows also .

TARA [ 1993 ] : This woman oriented show was first of its kind and it ran for almost 5 years . This Raman Kumar and Vinita Nanda show is considered a trend – setter even today . It was very bold for its time .

BANEGI APNI BAAT [ 1993 ] : It ran for 4 years and is the longest running weekly show on satellite channel .

PARAMPARA [ 1993 ] : Mohan Bhandari played main lead in this family drama .

ZEE HORROR SHOW [ 1993 ] : first of its kind , the show was hugely popular .

CAMPUS [ 1994 ] : This weekly college based serial revolved around the teacher and students .

HUM PAANCH [ 1995 ] : This Ekta Kapoor show will always be remembered because it is longest running weekly comedy show and Vidya Balan played one of the sisters .

SAILAAB [ 1995 ] : It was a shocker of its time because of its story of extra – marital affair .

AMANAT [ 1997 ] : It was the first family drama which was hit and set trend for the future family dramas .

Apart from above mentioned hugely successful shows , Zee TV’s recent shows are also very popular . They are ; SAATH PHERE , JHANSI KI RANI , AGLE JANAM MOHE BITIYA HI KIJO and PAVITRA RISHTA .

Initially Zee was number one but lost its numero Uno position to Star Plus when the latter came with ” Kaun Banega Crorepati “ .  Zee TV’s current position oscillates between no. 2 and no. 3 . But there no denying the fact that Zee was a trend – setter and should be congratulated for that .


Several of my students had featured in various shows of Zee . I congratulate Zee TV on behalf of all the students and staff of Vidur’s Kreating Charakters .








Jaspal Bhatti : This Is Not Funny Sir Ji !

MUMBAI – MAHARASHTRA – INDIA           OCTOBER 26 , 2012           00.30 A.M.

Just four days after Yash Chopra‘s death , one more tragedy struck us . India‘s most loved comic genius and satirist Jaspal Singh Bhatti died yesterday on October 25 , 2012 in the morning in car accident . He was just 57 at the time of his death . One more fine human being is gone .

I had no personal contacts with him . I knew him only through his work and it is needless to say that I am a huge fan . Years ago , I saw his two TV serials, which came on Doordarshan, and I was hooked . Those serials were hugely popular . Name of the serials are ;  Ulta Pulta &  Flop Show

He had sharp and very subtle sense of humour. It was not crass or vulgar . Whole family can sit and watch and enjoy his satirical take on the mundane problems of the common man and that precisely everyone did in those days .

I am posting photos of his many campaigns , which were hilarious as well as hard – hitting at the same time .

Before he hit the national television , he , during his college days in Amritsar , used to do street plays . ” Nonsense Club ” was his most famous street play . For some time he also worked as a cartoonist for The Tribune .

Later on he moved to do some more serials and did many movies also . Again he left his mark .


TV serials

Towards the end , he set up a training school and a studio in Chandigarh . It is known as Joke Factory .

He died in a freak accident when his car , driven by his son , rammed into a tree . He was returning after promoting his latest film ” Power Cut ” . We have lost a fine comedian with a sense of social justice .

I deeply regret and mourn his death . On behalf of all the students and whole staff of Vidur’s Kreating Charakters , I pay homage to the departed soul .

R.I.P. Mr. Bhatti ! Though your last act is definitely not funny .

[ List of his films and serials is taken from Wikipedia . I express my gratitude . ]









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