The Man Behind Doordarshan’s ‘Eye’
The Man Behind Doordarshan’s ‘Eye’

The story of Doordarshan’s Iconic Logo: The Man Behind Doordarshan’s ‘Eye’


India’s public service broadcaster, Doordarshan was launched on 15th December 1959 in New Delhi and it was a significant day in the history of modern Indian media.

From starting with an experimental telecast with a small transmitter in a makeshift studio, Doordarshan had a modest launch as a part of Prasar Bharti ‘the public service broadcaster of India’. Beginning with a Five-Minute news bulletin, the channel had to go on to add other programmes like the iconic Krishi Darshan, which is the ‘longest running’ program on Indian Television.

Anyone who has grown up in the decades of 70s, 80s, and 90s will always remember those happy moments of switching on the Television set and setting down in front of it. with its swirling logo of spinning eye and signature music, Doordarshan brought the world into our bedrooms. Later, the swirling logo of a spinning eye finally stabilized into a unique symbol.

Well, this iconic logo was designed by Devashish Bhattacharya, who was an alumnus of NID, might soon be retired & be replaced with something which is more contemporary. Here are some quick facts about the Doordarshan’s logo and the man who created it:

1: Devashish Bhattacharya along with 8 of his friends at NID was roped in for this project after Doordarshan moved out of being a subset of its parent company, the All India Radio(AIR) and decided that it needed its own symbol which would e a visual providing of is independent identity.

2: According to the reports published in the Hindustan Time, Bhattacharyya scribbled a human eye, drew two curves around it which was depicting the yin and yang, and later, he submitted his work to his teacher Vikas Satwalekar.

3: Total 14 designs were submitted by 8 students and 6 faculty members of NID– Bhattacharyya’s design was picked by then Prime Minister Indira Gandhi.

4: The animation work for the symbol was done by RL Mistry who was another student of National Institute of Design(NID). RL Mistry made copies of Bhattacharyya’s sketches and shot them with a camera. He would continue to rotate the images till they reached the final form, and which is popularly known as ‘DD Eye’ or Doordarshan’s ‘Eye’.

5: And later, this logo was accompanied with the music theme composed was non-other than the legendary Pandit Ravi Shankar, along with the Ustad Ali Ahmed Hussain Khan. And this symbol and tune appeared for the first time on television screens on 1st April 1976.

6: Later in the 80s and 90 the symbol had upgraded when new channels such as DD Sports, DD News, and some regional channels cropped up. Interestingly, for the DD News, the visual symbol was an athlete throwing a discuss that turns into the actual Doordarshan symbol.

7: Since a symbol has different meanings in various different cultures and while keeping in mind this thing, Bhattacharyya had to ensure that the Doordarshan logo didn’t create confusion. Speaking to the Firstpost, Bhattacharyya said that the symbol had to mean the same thing all over the nation and had to be symbol also. And the logo had to prepare the audience for an experience before it happened.

8: The tagline “Satyam Shivam Sundaram” accompanied with the logo had to do with a directive from Doordarshan. And eventually, it was removed.