Saturday, July 21, 2007

Latest Gossip!

According to what I'm hearing, there was a meeting of HT top brass at the Oberoi in Delhi yesterday, where Mrs Bhartiya, despite not keeping too well (the details, the details!) attended, and supposedly (I say supposedly because while the news has been confirmed by six different sources, you never know!) the American Import has been asked to go. From what I have heard this is because of HT's sharply declining numbers against a much-stronger ToI in the capital and the stagnation of the paper in Mumbai, even against an effectively headless DNA (The attenmpts by the Aggarwal family to find an editor is now reaching epic proportions!). Anyway, this does not come as a major surprise to me and to some readers of the blog, and this has been coming for a while. However, HT's sudden decision should get some of the other American Imports, particularly at Papermint scared! Long live the desi!
Anyway, the second part of the story gets even more interesting. According to a couple of commenters on this post, this actually happened a few days ago. Shekhar Gupta has been ousted from the Indian Express after that papers dismal recent performance - both financially and in the readership surveys. Of course, this ties in well with the above story because guess where he goes - EchTee! I don't know whether this will work at KG Marg, but I will say this much, given ToI's rampant expansion something needed to be done. Of course, promoting half of your staff to Associate Editors doesn't do the trick too well!
And guess who comes back to the Express according to the story! The one and only Arun Shourie. I don't know quite what to think, but this is a great positive for the Indian Express, and more importantly it seems that some new cash is also being pitched in, maybe the paper will be able to pay people something slightly more reasonable.
Anyway, yesterday's post was removed due to a request from a friend, and a potential delay in the subject matter of that post, it will be up again soon, and continue to believe that it is a good move. As for EchTee, I hope that paper can pick itself up!


Anonymous said...

1. DNA found an editor last month -R Jagganathan from DNA money took over. A round of promotions and the edit team is quite happy.

2.Of course HT sells more ad space than DNA. The latter is bleeding and several supplements have been scrapped.

3.There is no mint, only a hole in Mumbai - circulation-wise.

4.Shekhar Gupta's entry into HT, if true, means the Resident Editor, Business Editor, Political Editor, Features Editor, Sports Editor and assorted reporters will all feel shaky. All of them are ex-Express where SG had royally screwed their happiness over several years.

5.Arun Shourie can at best give Sonia Gandhi sleepless nights considering that the UPA has been blundering along with nobody to shine a light in its dark places. But the Shourie-Gurumurthy combo's best days came to an end with
the license-permit raj. IE could end up as the saffron version of the Economic and Political weekly.

Anonymous said...

HT seems to be in trouble - its factory manager turned CEO Verma is unable to hold onto the NRIs that it hired to turn the business around with Gul Mukhi (Head of New Initiatives) resigning recently and Piyush Shah (Head of Internet) looking like he is on his way. They have been unable to hold onto a CFO with Vinayak Poorohit leaving within a year and the post still vacant, even though a hefty package is on offer. These are the latest in a string of high profile departures since the IPO. Looks like TOI and TV18 are streets ahead in Indian Media - what went wrong with the grand old dame of HT?

Anonymous said... confirms CK's departure.

BTW, HT in Mumbai appeared without its print line on Saturday!!! What about other centres. The deskies got so shit-scared of boss lady they decided the law was a tamer animal????

K said...

I know for a fact that the Aggarwal's are still looking for an EiC, people have been approached in Delhi and several have said no.
SG joing Express will horribly impact several of the old-timers, some of whom saw the writing in the wall and decided to join the Daily Today.
Strangely enough the most stable editorial team in the recent past has been at ToI, when the supplant from ET has done the paper wonders! The problem child is now ET - someone please explain the first para here...
It reads like we know American pop culture, and you don't! Nyaah! Nyaah!

K said...

Sorry, click this link!
Read the first para!

Anonymous said...

Hi K,

Read the first para u suggested. It only means that the old charasi called Rahul Joshi is still around.

It is RJ' style to write such copy. He writing style hasn't changed since his days in businessworld.....

Anonymous said...

the hoot reports of three journos from telegraph being given the boot on the same day. why? why?

Anonymous said...

Hey, every second journo who is moderately senior in print has smoked pot and chances are that they still smoke pot. If K is who I think he is, I know he is/was a pot smoker. Heck, there are enough journo's in both print and television, particularly in Bombay who use cocaine. I'm sure K knows some of them.

Anonymous said...

Sadly some errors in this piece..DNA has not been headless for over a month from what i've heard. The business editor has become the editor-in-chief.

As for HT in Mumbai-now confirmed serial disaster in relaity & perception!