Tag Archives: The Indian Express

Barring ‘Indian Express’ and ‘Telegraph’, few newspapers ask why an orderly farmers’ protest suddenly went awry

The farmers’ protests in Delhi against new farm laws sneaked in through Parliament, with former ‘Prabhat Khabar‘ editor Harivansh playing a questionable part as Rajya Sabha deputy chair, had been mostly peaceful and exemplary for 66 days. But the “tractor parade” by the farmers on Republic Day, with protesters breaching pre-agreed conditions and “storming” Red…

What’s public about a private treaty? Times Group has Rs 69 crore stake in gaming platform MPL, the Indian cricket team’s kit sponsor

Conflict of interest is the zeitgeist, the spirit of the time. The official kit sponsor of the Indian cricket team is MPL: Mobile Premier League, ostensibly a fantasy game. And MPL’s unashamed brand ambassador is the team’s captain Virat Kohli. The Indian Express reveals today that Kohli has been allotted debentures worth Rs 33.32 lakh…

In Kerala, the state with 100% literacy, a course in schools and colleges to promote digital literacy

Three years ago, government schools in Kerala made headlines for introducing a course on dealing with fake news. Now the state has announced a five-step digital media literacy programme titled Satyameva Jayate. The salient points: What is wrong information? Why does it spread fast? What precautions should be adopted by social media users? How do…

If newspapers had been as clear about farm laws as they are against taxing corporates, Punjab’s farmers could have gone back home a long time ago

The month-long agitation by Punjab’s resolute farmers over the agricultural “reforms”, artfully sneaked through Parliament with former journalist Harivansh (former Editor of Prabhat Khabar) presiding over the Rajya Sabha, has seen the usual divisions in the media. Large sections of the media have been susceptible to official spin, running audio and video transcripts provided by…

J-POD || Podcast || “Pakistan took foreign journalists to Balakot a month after India’s strike. India is still to take its own journalists to Galwan six months after the Chinese incursion” || Sushant Singh

Exactly six months ago, on the intervening night of June 15-16 this year, the lives of 20 Indian soldiers ended—literally at the hands of the Chinese in the heights of Ladakh. For several weeks, large sections of mainstream media were in denial, dishing out the sarkari view that there was nothing abnormal on the border.…

Sending rejoinders and clarifications to media outlets is old hat. Booking cases against journalists is the norm in #NewIndia.

The front page of the Gujarati language newspaper Divya Bhaskar, published by the Dainik Bhaskar group, after four of its journalists were booked by police in Rajkot for a sting operation at a police station. The journalists were accused of trying to defame the police and compromising the investigation. The paper, however, contended it was…

‘Sub ka haath’: A typo in ‘The Indian Express’ that is a textbook definition of a ‘Freudian Slip’ in l’affaire M.J. Akbar

In the mid-1980s, when it still saw itself as a newspaper in the news business, The Times of India launched a annual contest for advertisements created by advertisers and agencies not for profit but in service of the public. The shortlisted entries—on keeping families small, streets clean, etc—were published in a separate pullout, along with…

After ‘Scam 1992’: How Harshad Mehta tried to place a column in ‘The Times of India’, where Sucheta Dalal had exposed his swindle

The 1992 stock market swindle starring Harshad Mehta broken by the journalist Sucheta Dalal is now a “major motion picture” thanks to the web series Scam 1992 directed by Hansal Mehta. Unbelievable as it may seem today, Sucheta’s investigation appeared in The Times of India, in an all-too-brief brush with investigative journalism for India’s largest…

In a sea of conformist editorials, ‘Hindustan Times’ takes the cake and the bakery on Arnab Goswami’s arrest

Newspaper editorials on Republic TV founder and editor Arnab Goswami‘s arrest for allegedly abetting the suicide of an unpaid studio designer all take the same line: that no matter what the facts of the case, the arrest of a pesky needler is wrong. *** Hindustan Times *** The Indian Express *** The Times of India…

“When Ramnath Goenka’s ‘Indian Express’ was raided, the reader felt choked. Today the reader doesn’t have that connect with much of the media”: Arun Shourie

What can the news media do when faced with vengeful rulers; scared and/or coopted owners and editors; advertising and circulation pressures; and a loss of trust and legitimacy among audiences distracted by digital and social media? In The Indian Express, the paper’s Magsaysay Award-winning former editor Arun Shourie expatiates the dilemma in questions posed by…

Newspaper front pages on acquittal of Babri Masjid accused show how Indian media has been hollowed out of courage and conviction since 1992

When the domes of the Babri Masjid in Ayodhya were brought down in 1992, the year after the liberalisation process began, there was great clarity in the news media and its consumers on the foundations on which the Republic of India stood. Blazing front-page editorials minced no words in denouncing the conspicuous destruction of the…

J-POD || Podcast || “Facebook’s deals with newsrooms, big editors’ proximity to its execs has prevented Indian media from investigating its BJP bias” || Kunal Purohit on ‘WSJ’ and ‘Time’ revelations

20 years ago, “Web 2.0” ushered in social media. It was free, it was fast, it was fun. Anybody with a phone could take part, and almost everyone did. It instantly connected friends, families, communities. Major political events like the ‘Arab Spring’ in Egypt briefly showed the potential of interactive, user-generated content to be a…

In editorials on Dr Kafeel Khan’s release, 6 out of 8 English newspapers cannot even take the name of his chief detractor, “India’s No.1 CM” Yogi Adityanath

Dr Kafeel Khan is, without doubt, one of the most egregious victims of majoritarianism in contemporary India, where a vengeful state unleashes the blunt instruments at its disposal to “teach a lesson” to a member of the minorities—and is cheered on in this naked display of brutality. The paediatrician’s cardinal sin was to flag the…

“Hold Facebook accountable. Misuse of social media a threat to democracy. Platforms must be agnostic to ideology”: newspaper editorials can’t hide weak reporting

Four days after The Wall Street Journal revealed Facebook’s chief India lobbyist Ankhi Das batting for BJP’s hate mongers, Indian newspapers are unable to add to a story that has deep implications for Indian society and polity. Also read: FB expose reveals barren cupboard ** Even today, there are no revelations and even today only…

J-POD || Podcast || “In 1992, journalists had to be beaten up to stop them from telling the Ayodhya story. Today it will appear on page 8. English media will go Hindi way soon” || Seema Chishti on covering the Babri Masjid demolition

*** Most journalists will confess that “changing people’s lives” was one of the reasons they got into the profession. Some might even remember this or that story that indeed changed a few lives. But not too many can claim that they actually reported a story that changed a billion lives, in fact changed a nation. The demolition…

How many journalists does it take to secure freedom for one of their own? 765.

Once upon a time, the jailed writer, poet and activist Varavara Rao had an occasional column in The Indian Express on Sundays. Now, as he languishes in jail, 765 Telugu journalists petition the Chief Justice of India and the Maharashtra chief minister urging for the release of the 81-year-old. And Prof G.N. Saibaba. Screenshot: courtesy…

Vinod Dua tells the Supreme Court: “I have freedom of speech and I have the right to criticise the government. I don’t have to answer the police as to why I criticised the government”

Charged by Himachal Pradesh police with sedition for remarks made “against” prime minister Narendra Modi on a YouTube video, veteran broadcaster Vinod Dua tells the Supreme Court: “I have freedom of speech and have the right to criticise the government. Till date, the police have refused to give us details on the nature of the…

J-POD || Podcast || “Coverage of border conflict is a dangerous new low. It signals to China that the incursion doesn’t matter very much or the government has controlled the media” || ex-FT journalist Rahul Jacob

Like nearly news event these days, China’s incursion into Ladakh has revealed the deep fault lines in the media. For weeks, most Indian newspapers and nearly all TV channels pretended nothing was amiss at the border. The exceptions—Ajai Shukla of Business Standard, Sushant Singh of The Indian Express, Manu Pubby of The Economic Times—could be…

24 things that happened to the media during the Emergency, besides the three you already know

The Emergency of 1975 is in danger of becoming a cliche, pulled out with rhetorical flourish around June 25 each year to remember Indian democracy’s darkest 21 months. It’s used so loosely as a catch-all scare-word—even by those who have much to hide, especially by those who have much to hide—that for the 81% of…

J-POD || Podcast || “No ruler would be so foolish as to openly declare censorship today. There are enough subtle ways to bring it in quietly” || Coomi Kapoor on the best-kept secret of the Emergency

*** An acclaimed Indian Express journalist, whose husband was jailed during the Emergency of 1975, says governments no longer need to take Indira Gandhi’s route of introducing censorship to control the media or the message that reaches the people. “Parties have found enough ways to control the media without having to formally declare censorship. Governments…