According to some sources it appears that The V, for lack of anything to do is going back to EchTee, and not only am I surprisied at the decision, I'm surprised EchTee is allowing this. In the last six-eight months the paper had managed to pick up some of the pieces after the Times consistently trashed it in Delhi both on readership and circulation. From all indications, the coteries in the newsroom had been broken (weakened in any case) and the place began to finally resemble a somewhat professional place.
What will happen now is unclear, but I am pretty sure that the people over at The Times of India are rather happy. EchTee had finally stopped using the line that, "Our editorial content is better", because over the past two years, it was evident that it wasn't. There is still a lot of deadwood in EchTee that needs seriously cleaning up. In the early 200's, the paper lost a lot of capable young twenty-somethings (including myself) to both television and rival papers, and there was no concerted effort to hold onto these people. When efforts were made, they were so half-hearted, that really no-one cared. Most of these young things have gone on to do fairly well wherever they joined, the Times of India in many cases.
Don't get me wrong, I still am very grateful to that newspaper and I still think that the The V is a great writer. But I'm not sure getting him back in an controlling position editorially is a terribly good idea. This also leaves the question of what will happen to those who went off with The V to join him at NewsX, will they all be accomodated back in HT? Some of these people burned all the bridges they have at the paper, and getting them back might lead to an open revolt among some of the people who have joined the paper since they left. So EchTee, which has been in a state of flux editorially for the last three years will stay that way. I have a bad feeling that a concerted effort by another paper could see them topple EchTee from the #2 position too, if they decide to strike now.
Also, on the NewsX front, it seems that Arup Ghosh, who happens to still be around, is joining them as Newsroom chief. Weirder things have happened.