“TV has lost 20 percent of its audiences to OTTs,” claims JD Majethia

Films and TV shoots were suspended for the first three months of the pandemic, it seems that during the lockdown the viewers have looked up to the OTT platforms as a form of entertainment. News channels have also seen a spike in their viewership as people in the lockdown were looking forward to the recent developments in tackling the COVID-19 situation. There is a shift in the consumption pattern of the viewers in terms of entertainment as people earlier considered daily soaps as their primary source of enjoyment. The difference in viewership can be easily measured as the daily soaps have returned to the television.

Television viewership has declined post lockdown, says JD Majethia, chairman, Indian Film and TV Producers Council (IFTPC), TV and web wing. “Almost 20 per cent of our viewers have not returned to television. The TRP of my show Bhakarwadi was 0.7 in March, now it stands at 0.4. Similarly, shows like Kumkum Bhagya, Kundali Bhagya and Taarak Mehta Ka Ooltah Chashmah have not been able to match their original ratings. The dip in the numbers will continue for some time as the Indian Premier League will begin soon. Several shows may go off air or will be replaced,” he explains.

Majethia states that the OTT platforms have become a tough competitor and news channels have emerged as an unpredictable oponent. “The audience is glued to OTT, movies and news. They have not been able to connect with daily shows. Plus, due to the ongoing Sushant [Singh Rajput] case, primetime news has become like a one-hour maha episode that the entire nation is watching,” he adds.

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