Even after four months of its launch, the much-hyped exclusive education TV channel -- ‘Kalvi Tholaikatchi’ -- has only a few takers with Tamil Nadu government, left struggling to attract the viewers, especially young school students.
Adding to its woes, Tamil Nadu Arasu Cable TV Corporation (TACTV), the nodal agency to broadcast the education channel, has only a few lakh subscribers across the State, including less than one lakh viewers in Chennai, as against several crores audience-base through satellite TV connections.
A senior official from the School Education Department said that the ‘Kalvi Tholaikatchi’, the first education channel in the country, was started with the help of Tamil Nadu State Council of Educational Research (SCERT), at a cost of Rs 5 crore.
The channel broadcasts education related news including teachers’ lectures, students’ inventions, interviews of various academicians and question and answer sessions for classes 1 to 12 through TACTV for few hours daily.
Though TACTV claims that it has a subscriber base of about 30 lakh, Tamizhaga Cable TV Operators General Welfare Association State president P Shakilan told DT Next that the Arasu Cable TV has only 25 lakh active viewers across the State that includes less than one lakh audience in Chennai.
He said in Tamil Nadu, the Direct to Home (DTH) subscribers have crossed two crores, which counts more than 80% of the total television viewers in the State.
Expressing concern over the less viewers, Tamil Nadu Teachers Association President P K Ilamaran said the government should take immediate steps to stream the education channel through satellite network so that more students are benefited.
“In addition, the current programme in the channels is not that attractive. It looks like a routine class room. Therefore, programmes should be improved on par with the private channels,” he said.
The poor response to the ‘Kalvi Tholaikatchi’ is evident as the YouTube version of the channel also evoked poor response from viewers.
At present, only 150 video lectures are uploaded for students studying in various standards in the play list option and the duration of each programme is between 15 to 25 minutes.
However, only one video titled -- “Oru Oril” (in a town) -- got nearly 1,100 views even though it was uploaded a month back. “Muparimanam” (multi-dimension in Mathematics) got the least number of views.