In which, Prabhu Chawla, the new editorial director of the South-based The New Indian Express, tackles readers’ queries on the media and the launch of The Sunday Standard from Delhi, with trademark frankness.
Vol I. No.IV.
Q: How much did Jayalalitha and her associates pay to get paid news published in your daily? Not even one article about Karunanidhi‘s massive election rallies.
A: The person is yet to take birth on earth who can compromise the paper founded by late Ramnath Goenka.
Q: In one of your answers you tried to defend Tehelka, but it is known fact that father of Tarun Tejpal of Tehelka was a close associate of [the late Congress leader] Arjun Singh and Tehelka was started at the behest of Arjun Singh to go after BJP. Why shy from reality?
A: That is your view. Why do you blame the son for what kind of company Tarun’s father keeps. Tarun has worked with me in India Today. He is one of the best writers in the country.
Q: What is your monthly income?
A: Income Tax department knows it very well.
Q: I will pick up the hard copy of NIE from news stalls if at least the front-page lay out/news is appealing. How long do we have to wait for improvement?
A: Start doing it now and you will get a surprise sooner.
Q: Your Sunday Standard looks like a paper from the 1980s. There’s no glamour to it and its design is no match for the likes of Hindustan Times. Inside pages are worse still. Please do something about it.
A: We welcome your feed back. But huge numbers of readers have welcomed both the content and the design
Q: Almost all English dailies in Tamil Nadu have an epaper for readers. Why is NIE trailing in this?
A: We want our readers to read the hard copy and feel and enjoy a new look paper.
Q: Is NIE thinking of entering into electronic media, like other newspapers? Why not go in for a 24/7 news channel?
A: Slow and steady wins the race. Please wait and watch.
Q: ‘Don’t stretch your legs before you sit’ is a saying in Malayalam. The NIE should have taken action to stop its marginalisation in the south, because of its trash-like production quality, before venturing to capture New Delhi with Sunday Standard. Don’t you think so?
A: I am sorry. I don’t share your pessimistic opinion. Even in the wake of powerful competition, NIE is the only newspaper to grow by more than 20 percent in circulation in South. We know our business very well.
Vol I. No.I: Straight drives from the man behind Seedhi Baat
Vol I. No II: Home truths from the man behind Sachchi Baat
Vol I. No. III: My greatest feat and my greatest failure