Today In History: Dr Subhash Chandra launched India’s first private satellite channel ‘Zee TV’ in 1992

New Delhi: On this day (October 2) in 1992, Essel Group chairman Dr Subhash Chandra launched India’s first satellite TV, which the world now knows by the name Zee TV. He is the founder of Zee Entertainment Enterprises Limited, which was founded on December 15, 1991, a few months ahead of the channel launch. 

On the 29th anniversary of ZEE, the company’s current CEO Punit Goenka said, “It is a rather emotional moment for me as this precious institution completes 29 extraordinary years. I am extremely proud of the immense value ZEE has created for all its stakeholders over the years.”

Born in Adampur, Haryana, Dr Chandra hailed from an Agarwal Bania family. However, his early days were tough, as his family wasn’t able to fund his education due to the debt that ran to the tune of Rs 3.5 lakh. 

After dropping out of school, he joined his family trading business while working closely with the Food Corporation of India (FCI). At the job, he shared his idea to store the food grains in open years and cover them with special plastic sheets. Earlier, grains were stored in overburdened godowns. 

He convinced FCI with his idea and brought Swiss machines to India to manufacture such sheets. However, with no expertise, over 90% of the sheet went to waste. So, he decided to send engineers to Switzerland to train them and start the manufacturing process again. The trick worked. 

Moreover, taking inspiration from Disneyland in the US, he decided to start his own adventure park. He then purchased land in North Mumbai to create Essel World, India’s first amusement park, in 1989. 

Following Essel World and Zee TV, Dr Chandra launched India’s first-ever satellite television provider in India, Dish TV. Moreover, he also came up with a new show named ‘Dr Subash Chandra Show’ with the aim to motivate the youth. Also Read: Xiaomi’s ‘Mi With Diwali’ Sale: Check top offers on Redmi Note 10, Mi 11 series, bank discounts and more

Dr Chandra is also an awardee of the Global Indian Entertainment Personality of the Year Award. He had won the award in the year 2004. Other awards won by Chandra include Ernst & Young’s Entrepreneur of the Year Award and Business Standard’s Businessman of the year in 1999, and Indian News Broadcasting awards in 2010, among others. Also Read: Aadhaar enrolment, update to get more accessible as UIDAI plans to open 166 centres

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Sagar Biswas

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