New Delhi | Jagran Lifestyle Desk: World Television Day will be observed on November 21 to recognise the increasing impact of visual media and how it helps in shaping public opinion and decision-making around the world. The day commemorates the date on which the first United Nations World Television Forum was held in 1996.

Television programming has had a huge impact on Indian culture ever since it was first introduced in India in 1959 with the help of United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organisation. Initially, programmes on community health, citizens' duties, and such were broadcasted twice a week for an hour a day. The nature of television content evolved throughout the second half of the 20th century.  

16 years after it was first introduced, only seven series in India had television services. The programmes were mainly produced by Doordarshan, which was then a part of All India Radio. Government-owned Doordarshan remained the only national channel for the first thirty years. The small screen programming began in 1980 and the shows like Ramayan and Mahabharat became immensely popular among the masses. Other programmes included: Hum Log (1984-85), Buniyaad (1986-87), Wagle Ki Duniya (1988) and Yeh jo Hai Zindagi (1984).

Private and foreign broadcasters were allowed to engage after 1991, following central government's economic and social reforms. Domestic channels like ZEE TV, Sun TV, and foreign channels like Star TV and CNN began to offer a wide range of entertainment. Today, more than half the households have television sets, while the list of channels top 900.  

Posted By: Lakshay Raja