The first English language TV channel for British Asians opens for
business this week.
Channel East, which is aimed primarily at assimilated second and third
generation British Asians, will broadcast programmes made by British
Asians for British Asians exclusively in English on Sky’s digital
All commissioning will be in the hands of programming head Pom
’Second and thirdgeneration Asians are now very much part of mainstream
British life,’ said a spokesman. ’We will be taking a primarily
community TV approach to our output. There will a range of news and
lifestyle programmes - a combination of West and East, although
sometimes you will not be able to tell that it isn’t just another
English channel,’ she added.
There are at least three other channels targeting the 3.5 million-strong
British Asian community. Z TV is a cable channel for Asians which buys
in programmes from India. B4U is a Bollywood film channel and Sony is
another cable channel that buys in Asian language programmes.
Although it promises a diet of what would be regarded as uncontentious
fare by mainstream TV standards, one observer, who predicted it could
cause controversy, said: ’Channel East is aimed at younger people. Asian
parents can be very strict and traditional in their views.’