Trade and Technical Tellys fete cream of industry

MUMBAI: The Indian Trade and Technical Telly Awards, given away at a well attended function tonight, set the tone for the third edition of the annual MTR Foods Indian Telly Awards 2003.

Hosts Rupali Ganguly & Pooja Mishra

The setting was just right at the Harbour Hall at the Tulip Star in Mumbai on Wednesday evening, where the august assembly of creative heads and technical wizards rubbed shoulders with grave number crunchers who bring in the revenues to television and image builders and lens wielders who bring that extra sheen to television. With the sometimes bitchy banter between the hosts of the show - popular television actors Rupali Ganguly and Pooja Mishra - the mood was set for the awards.

Neelu Sawhney of Aaj Tak bagged the award for the TV ad sales head of the year, while Shantonu Aditya of SET-Discovery Ltd walked away with the TV distribution head of the year award. Zee News' Alka Saxena was adjudged the TV programming head of the year. The TV marketing head of the year trophy was won by Star India's Mubina Ansari.

Shantonu Aditya and his team with their awards, which has taken the initiative in celebrating excellence in the television industry since the last three years. The Trade and Technical Awards section was launched as a separate felicitation function last year, to honour those whose contribution is crucial to the success of a show, but often not recognised. These are awards that turn the spotlight on those vital cogs that help in the smooth running of the industry and, very often, help to take it to a higher level.

Aashish Rego receiving his awards from jury member Vivek Agnihotri

Among the 23 categories for which the awards were given away, were those for the best visual effects (Cinevistaas' for Shhh...Koi Hai), best costumes (Neeta Malhotra for Kittie Party) and best TV channel packaging (Max). The best set design award went to Jayant Deshmukh for Aamrapali (aired on DD). Bhushan Patel was adjudged best cameraman for Lipstick on Zee and Neeta Malhotra walked away with the honours for best costumes for Kittie Party on Zee. Aashish Rego was adjudged as the winner of the best background music for a TV programme category for Sony's Goonj Ateet Ki. Rego said, "I feel very exhilarated, its a great honour to receive this award for the second time." He thinks that it is the fine blend of Carnatic music with the mainstream background score that sets his music apart from the rest."

The Best TV Show Packaging award went to Ryan Mascarenhas for Star Plus' Sshhh...Koi Hai. Says Ryan, "I wish my team had more time to work both on special effects and show packaging. Nevertheless, it has been a challenge to do quality work in so little time." The Best TV Channel Packaging award was bagged by the Max team. Star News and NDTV shared the honours for the Best Promos for a News Progamme (Reality Bites-Elections), and Sab TV bagged the award for Best Promo for a fiction show for its much acclaimed show, Office Office. Said Rachel Naware of Sab TV, "Competition was tough, we were set up against Star Plus and Sony. Since it is the first time that we have been nominated, half the battle was already won."

The Star team with their share of the awards

Simpoo fetched Channel [V] the award for Best Promo for a format show. The channel also scored on the Best Promo for a Music Programme with Freedom Express. Said V's head honcho Amar Deb, replying to a query about the kind of competition his channel faced, "What competition? There is no competition. We have and always will be number one."

The slick editing of Kaahin Kissi Roz on Star Plus got Dhiren Singh an award for TV Picture Editor of the Year. Said Singh, "In KKR I thought I brought out the right meaning of certain specific scenes very well. That's why I think I deserve the award. In fact even half an hour ago my friends called me and I told them I will get the award."

The Max team bagged The TV Channel Promo of the Year for the Deewana Bana De campaign. The Best Videography Award (non fiction) was won by Ajmal Jani for Reality Bites for the episode on Mental Health, while T Gopalkrishnan was adjudged TV Picture Editor of the Year (non fiction) for the 2002 Yearender.

Said an elated Ansari, of her win in the marketing category, "We at Star work as a team and the credit goes to the whole team." Prakash Ramchandani of Max was ruled the TV Marketing Executive of the Year. Said he, "The Star and Ten Sports competition was tough, but we made it!" SET-Discovery Ltd's Anuj Gandhi was adjudged TV Distribution Executive of the Year and Shola Rajachandran bagged the TV Communication and PR Executive of the Year award. Said winner of the TV distribution head award Shantonu Aditya, "There were a long list of accomplishments for us in 2002. Our subscriptions went up by over 50 per cent when we joined hands with Discovery for the One Alliance. We proved the sceptics wrong by selling the Champions Trophy and later on, our bargaining position was strengthened with the addition of channels like HBO."

Actor Asawari Joshi performing at the MTR Foods Trade and Technical Telly Awards

Gandhi said,"We have one of the best teams working today, we constantly come up with new ideas and do our best to think out of the box. "

Lastly Hatway Cable and datacom and In cable net jointly bagged the MSO/Cable Operator of the year award.

While the Trade and Technical Awards sounded a suitably more sober note than the main MTR Indian Telly Awards 2003 event, the show was interspersed with acts by noted film and television artiste, Asawari Joshi and Vikram Sathe, who had the audience in splits with his take on cricketers past and present.

Vikram Sathe had the audience in splits with his mimicry on cricketers

Attended by the cream of all fields of the television industry, the evening set the tone and mood for the event to follow on Friday, that will get together and celebrate on screen talent in the industry.

The trade and technical awards preceded the long awaited main event - The MTR Indian Telly Awards 2003 that will be held on Friday, 21 November 2003. The cream of the industry, including top executives, creative heads and technical experts, are expected to mark their presence at the function.

In its third year now, the Telly Awards are the most credible and sought after annual honours looked forward to by the entire television fraternity in the county. Initiated by Anil Wanvari, the founder & CEO of, the Telly Awards stand for quality, integrity and excellence in the various fields that make up the television industry.

Says Wanvari: "The awards have grown bigger than ever, both in terms of entries and the responses. Our Nominee Nite where we felicitated the nominees was a huge success with the Indian television industry. Industry can look forward to a rip-roaring Technical Awards and the piece de resistance, the Popular Awards on 21 November."

The Indian Telly Awards have MTR Foods as the main title sponsor, while Zandu, Tata Safari and Daawat Rice are the associate sponsors. The MTR Indian Telly Awards also has Hindustan Times as Media partner, Radio City as the radio partner, Bright Advertising as the outdoor partner. Spirits are provided by the UB group.

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