Iran’s state television thrives during the holy month of Ramadan, when a fresh schedule of shows and soap operas with social and religious themes draws a rising number of viewers.
This year’s Ramadan season is different, however. The broadcaster, which played a vital role in government propaganda in the wake of the disputed June 12 presidential election, is being punished by its audience.
Ezatollah Zarghami, head of state radio and television, was quoted in the media last week as saying that the number of viewers had shrunk by 40 per cent since the election. Though his office later denied the comments, some observers say the drop he cited understated the fall in interest.