Tag Archives: Emergency

‘Deccan Herald’ proves that the distance between Bangalore and Imphal (2,162 km) is shorter than Delhi-Imphal (1,712 km)

The distance between Delhi and Imphal, as the crow flies, is 1,712 km. But Manipur’s capital is light years from the national capital for the sauntering cows and fattened calves grazing on the saffron lawns of Lutyens Dilli. While a loosely used label to describe ANI editor Smita Prakash got every one from BJP publicity…

The scoop interview that didn’t see light of day

Reporters look as if they have been stabbed in the back, as if the world as they knew it has come to an end, when their favourite stories and hobby horses are stopped in their tracks by those godawful editors who have “never been in the field” unlike the only Indian living editor who has…

The Editor who declined the Padma Bhushan

Today, 3 November 2013, is the birth centenary of Nikhil Chakravartty, the “barefoot reporter” who founded the journal Mainstream. NC or Nikhilda, as most who knew him called him, plunged into active journalism as a special correspondent with the Communist Party organ People’s War (1944-46) and People’s Age (1946-48), and later Crossroads (1952-55) and New…

‘Licensing journos: recipe for total state control’

The following is the full text of the statement issued by N. Ravi, president of the Editors’ Guild of India, on the proposal mooted by minister of state for information and broadcasting, Manish Tewari, on a “common examination” for student-journalists and a “licence” for journalists to perform their function: “The suggestion of the Union minister…

What they said when Shankar shut his Weekly

The capitulation of the Congress-led government at the Centre in the Ambedkar cartoon controversy was welcomed with the thumping of desks by parliamentarians who seemed to have little appreciation of the legendary Shankar‘s work and even less of what its inclusion in a school textbook meant. From Congress president Sonia Gandhi (whose mother-in-law Indira Gandhi…

MUST READ: ‘Shankar’s Weekly’ final editorial

Media freedom in India id est Bharat has never been a more scarce commodity than in the year of the lord 2012. The fourth estate is under concerted attack from all three pillars of our democracy—the legislature, the executive and the judiciary. Organisations mandated to protect media freedom (like the press council of India) are…

Is UPA hitting back at ToI, India Today, DNA?

There has been plenty of buzz in recent days that the Congress-led UPA government has quietly begun hitting back at the media for the manner in which it has exposed the scams and scandals, and for the proactive manner in which it backed the middle-class led “Arnab Spring”. There have been rumours, for instance, of…

‘Indira exploited Western media outrage in ’75’

William Rees-Mogg, the former editor of The Times, London, on the Emergency of 1975 and media censorship, in his book, Memoirs, to be published by Harper Collins on July 7: “We attacked in a Times leader Mrs Indira Gandhi‘s suspension of Indian democracy. I only saw Mrs Gandhi once. She was insufferably arrogant, and very…

Is Indian Express now a pro-establishment paper?

PRITAM SENGUPTA writes from New Delhi: The Indian Express of Ramnath Goenka is an unputdownable chapter in the book of Indian journalism. Unlike many of its English counterparts—whose grammar was constricted by Wren & Martin, and the Raj—Express was the archetypal desi bully. “Anti-establishment,” was the Express‘ calling card. Its reputation was built on stones…

A blank editorial, a black editorial & a footnote

When Indira Gandhi introduced media censorship as part of the Emergency in 1975, Indian newspapers ran blank editorials as a form of protest. The Kannada newspaper Vijaya Karnataka, belonging to The Times of India group, runs a blank (and black) editorial today, in protest against what happened in the State legislative assembly on Monday, during…

B.G. VERGHESE: The declaration of Emergency

The former Indian Express and Hindustan Times editor B.G. Verghese has just released his memoirs, First Draft (Tranquebar). This excerpt, carried by HT last week, captures the declaration of Emergency and the introduction of press censorship by Indira Gandhi‘s regime in 1975. *** By B.G. VERGHESE A little before 2 am on June 26 [1975],…

Ramnath Goenka: Courage of the 2 o’clock kind

India’s foremost jurist, Fali S. Nariman, on India’s bulldog of a publisher, Ramnath Goenka of the undivided Indian Express, in his just-published memoirs Before Memory Fades*: “Ramnath Goenka was founder and managing editor of the The Indian Express, and he had, what Napoleon called, courage of  “the two o’ clock-in-the-morning-kind”—unprepared courage that is necessary to…

‘People, not the press, are the real fourth estate’

The press in India, like the press elsewhere, holds on to the belief that it is the Fourth Estate of democracy, after the legislature, the executive and the judiciary, although the press in India, as much as the press elsewhere, finds its institutional and individual integrity increasingly under question. In an article on the Open…

Should the media be honouring politicians?

Should a designated prime ministerial candidate of a mainstream political party be chosen and given an award by a television channel which might have to cover him if and when he takes charge? Should the candidate so eagerly accept such a public honour? The candidate is L.K. Advani of the Bharatiya Janata Party, and the…

Pseudonymous author spells finis to Mint editor?

PRITAM SENGUPTA writes from New Delhi: Journalists at Mint, the business daily launched by the Hindustan Times group as “an unbiased and clear-minded chronicler of the Indian dream”, are in a state of shock after the dramatic weekend announcement of the resignation of its founding editor, Raju Narisetti (in picture), less than two years after…

‘A DISGRACEFUL ASSAULT ON MEDIA FREEDOM’

What is the role of a newspaper in a democratic society? Is it just supposed to reassure us that the sun rose majestically in the east this morning? Is it committing a cardinal sin in reporting that the big fellow may have strayed off his path while we were groggy? Is a newspaper wrong in…

‘Did we fight Emergency for this kind of media?’

The media coverage of the verbal and physical violence in Bombay over the influx of outsiders continues to draw attention. Indo-Asian News Service (IANS) reports that at the Union cabinet meeting on February 14, senior ministers “expressed their outrage” at the reporting which some of them felt sparked panic and led to a mass exodus…