Bishaash, a 24 part TV drama which regularly attracted ratings in Bangladesh of 14 million, is to be aired in Britain this March after it was given to Zee TV without charge by BBC World Service Trust.
The show, in both Bengali and English, features a young British-Bangladeshi woman called Zara, who moves from London to Dhaka to help run an antique shop. There she meets the mystical investigator Abir, and a world of wonder unfolds.
Zee will also show the accompanying BBC game show Janala: Moja Moja Shekha, which builds on the elements of English language used in Bishaash.
“For many British Bangladeshis the desire and need to learn English is strong, even today,” said Caroline Howie, Asia director, BBC World Service Trust. “This new partnership will provide an opportunity for people with low English skills to share in the unique learning experience provided by the shows.”
The BBC World Service Trust produces content with financial help from bodies such as the UK Government’s Department for International Development (DfID) and the Gates Foundation. In this case, the two programmes were part of a DfID initiative to promote English language learning in Bangladesh.