This interview I took when I was working in Geo TV in 2012. This interview was posted on Geovision website. I am sharing some chunks of the interview over here for my readers.
“I believe that everything happens for a reason but if you really yearn something, it definitely comes your way,” says Ayesha Ehtesham, a renowned face in the news industry.
She is the most admired news anchor of the program. Unlike her presence on the screen that comes out as a strong and a confident person, there is a naivety in her personality off-screen.
Whether it was by coincidence or destiny, Ayesha joined the media industry during her university life. It was not a pre-planned decision, but as J.K. Rowling says: “What we are today is not a reflection of our abilities but the choices we make,” thus Ayesha is fortunate enough to make the right choice for her career.
During university days, she proved her ability as radio presenter in FM channel of University of Punjab Radio. However, before joining Geo News, she has not only worked as an associate producer in one of the former channels but a broadcaster as well.
She hosted a program known as Geo Extra that airs on Geo News. It is a one hour slot based on news and events where the style of the news is different from the other run-of-the-mill news presentation. Ayesha talked about the latest news by adding an extra zing to the news bulletins.
Geo Vision brings you up-close and personal with lovely Ayesha Ehtesham who believes in making the right choice at the right time.
MADIHA AKHTAR: Why you choose to be a news anchor?
AYESHA EHTESHAM: During my childhood days, a part of me always wanted to do something in front of camera though I never had any plan of being a newscaster, but it seems that my luck played its role. I had two options in my university life, the first was Clinical Psychology and the other was Communications. Interestingly, my fate chose the latter one for me and I accidentally bumped into this profession.
MA: According to you, three qualities that are needed to become a successful news anchor?
AE: Foremost one need to have sharp senses because a single mistake means you are out of the game; secondly confidence and finally knowledge. I believe that these are some of the significant components that a news anchor should possess.
MA: Do you think that looks are given more importance than knowledge for being an anchor…your take?
AE: Personally, I disagree from this statement. Before one could give importance to the looks over knowledge but after the inclusion of private channels, anchors are required to be well-prepared. However, there are two reasons of my disagreement; firstly you have hourly live news and breaking alerts one cannot survive until and unless one is not well-informed. Secondly, one needs to be camera-friendly – any sane person can lose confidence while facing camera, though for a newscaster you need to have confidence for your mental alertness.
MA: Who is your inspiration in anchoring?
AE: Faiza Dawood, former Geo newscaster Nida Sameer and Hala Ghurrani of CNN.
MA: Give one positive and negative point of being a news anchor?
AE: I think the positives are good package and limelight (giggle), whereas the drawback is the compromise of the personal lives.
MA: While doing live bulletins, did you face any mishap?
AE: There are several occasions when you come across funny or embarrassing situations; which include munching words during bulletins or doing lisping so on and so forth.
MA: Your most memorable moment while doing news bulletin?
AE: (Thinking hard) I guess it is yet to come!
MA: Any news that made you speechless or gave goose bumps? How did you recover yourself?
AE: Well, to be honest it’s not a good feeling at all to present bad news to the viewers, I really feel bad from inside. The assassination of Salman Taseer and the recent Malala issue – these were the times when I felt crying. But this is the job of us as anchors to control ourselves. At a glance, it might seem insensitive but this is a part of our job to avoid showing any lines of emotion on our face.
MA: What has been your favorite news that made your day?
AE: Once a batman entered a news studio where a presenter was sitting and giving her bulletin. She shrieked at the sight of flying creature, it was one of the news that really brings a smile on my face. My reason of amusement is because of my association with the profession. I am a newscaster, so definitely any news related to your contemporaries is hilarious.
MA: Among noted personalities at Geo News, who is your favorite one?
AE: Najam Sethi – he is the man of masses and his style of explaining things is very casual which I find it interesting.
MA: In our present lot of politicians, who do you think is the rational one?
AE: For me, Imran Khan all the way!
MA: Other than you, who is your favourite anchor in Geo TV?
AE: Danish Anis Sheikh-the attribute of being involved in every show is commendable. The peppiness and an interactive style of his anchoring are his strong points.
MA: Are you a planner? Do you have any goals?
AE: I am not a planner, I live at the moment. Though my goal is to excel in the field of media and I am just hoping for the best.
MA: How has been your experience working with Geo?
AE: So far, it’s been a good journey. In my opinion, Geo is one such organisation that provides you a family environment to work at your comfort.
MA: To your fans, what you want to say?
AE: Nothing is impossible, yes nothing is! I never thought I would land into news anchoring, but destination paves its own way. It’s not impossible to achieve what you want; the only means is to have a firm belief on God and one’s ability.