‘The TV anchor; the ex-editor & TV personality’

29 April 2010

It’s raining phone taps in India.

First Outlook* magazine reported that new technologies available with the UPA government enabled it to pluck mobile phone signals off the air and eavesdrop into conversations without seeking legal authorisation.

Then, The Pioneer reported that an authorised tap (since denied) had revealed PR honcho Neera Radia‘s nexus with A. Raja, the telecom minister in the thick of controversy over the auction of 2G spectrum.

Now, MiD-DaY tosses a couple of well-known journalists into the soup.

Quoting from 14 pages of documents that have been doing the rounds for months in Delhi, J. Dey reports:

“The documents talk about individuals influencing policy changes at the highest level. It also says that two senior journalists—one a well-known anchor of a national television channel and the other a former editor, columnist and TV personality—lobbied on behalf of industrialists to secure ministerial berths for friendly politicians.”

Yesterday, a newspaper editor, for whose publication the “former editor, columnist and TV personality” now writes a weekly column, put up the news on his Twitter account.

The Hindu put up the 14-page document purporting to be the transcript of the intercepted phone conversations on its website before taking it off.

But one of the two journalists mentioned in the documents has thought it fit to respond, again on Twitter.

Meanwhile, Tata Sons, which is represented by Neera Radia, has issued a press statement through her agency neucom consulting.

“The Tata group has had a long and fruitful association with Vaishnavi Corporate Communications and its chairperson Ms Niira Radia (sic), which has added substantial value to the group’s communications and public perception.

“All of Vaishnavi’s interactions with the government on behalf of the Tata group have been related to seeking a level playing field and equity in areas where vested interests have caused distortions or aberrations in policy.

“Further Vaishnavi’s interactions with the Government on behalf of the Tata group, have, in keeping with Tata values, never involved payouts or seeking undue favors.”

Newspaper facsimile: courtesy MiD-DaY

Read the full article: Tap worm in India Inc

* Disclosures apply

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