Wednesday, July 09, 2008

New Boss

According to several sources (who kept calling and texting me during meetings) - Samar Halankar will likely be appointed as the new boss of the Hindustan Times following the board meeting tomorrow. The exact designation is unknown - Executive Editor or Managing Editor and no-one knows whether Halankar will be based in Delhi or Mumbai. My opinion is that basing himself in Mumbai will be another disasterous move for HT, but if halankar comes to Delhi, it will be a lot better than the succession of foreign bosses the paper has seen. Even though samar could not quite make a success of HT Mumbai.
Anybody have any details on Pradeep Guha's new operation?

16 comments:

Sagi said...

You got a point there about Samar. Another thing, EchTee (as u love to call it) somewhat resembles the BCCI, which is obsessed with foreign coaches (read gori chamri).

Anonymous said...

HT would be making a mistake if Samar were to join as editor.
Point one, he has a bad track record. His Express job went because he was playing politics with the existing employees and many of them quit.
Point two, HT under him, has become a marketing product. I am told that the marketing team has a set of copywriters who come and give headlines for the front page or as they say, suggest headlines.
In fact, after he joined HT were completely berserk because a lot of senior people left.
Point three, as an editor of a paper, I would love to know what does he - Samar Harlankar - bring to the paper. Vir, despite his fallacies, was a well-read columnist and had good design sense. Samar is neither a great reporter except an occasional Bangalore story)nor an awesome editor. His man management skills are also not very appreciated (unlike Jojo) because he take sides and to push his girls (mostly), he sidelines good people (am not an aggrieved party, but anyone working with him would say that).
Of course, his wife Priya,has created Lounge (Mint's Saturday paper) which is widely appreciated.
It is again widely rumored that since Samar and Priya go as a package deal everyone, if Samar were to leave HT, so would Priya. Will HT just going to make someone an Editor, based on the performance of the spouse? -- I am sure they will... and that is bad news for media. Is Ms Bhartiya reading this?

Anonymous said...

HT doesn't need just an editor. It needs poeople from trainess upwards who are totally new.

The old staff sucks. In all ways!

Anonymous said...

i agree with the first anonymous comment. samar is not a professional person and from what i've read on your blog about the goings on in HT, it needs someone professional. samar has no perspective on a whole lot of issues - politics, business, economy - and he plays games. has a huge ego. plus is great at giving the impression that he does a lot of work without actually doing very much. he was once aroon purie's blue eyed boy but got sidelined later. you're in that group. find out what happened. and do let us know.

Anonymous said...

Get rid of Vir. He is the guy who is behind the scene.

God knows how he mesmerises madam Shobhana.

As long as Vir uses HT like a pisspot, no good editor will come. and if they do, Vir won't leth them survive. I mean it.

Anonymous said...

HT needs an editor, but Samar may not be the answer. His role has been divisive in the past, and Mumbai has been a big disaster for the most. Does he have the skill to actually hold the paper together, which is needed at present? Well, that's debatable. There were rumours that a certain Peter Bhatia would be brought in, when Pankaj Paul was screwing the paper and a whore... Maybe they'll bring this Peter Bhatia, after all. The lure of ABCD's very strong at HT, perhaps because of their low-brow past.

Anonymous said...

So Samar has been playing politics in HT Mumbai, and had a bad track record at the Express? But in any case, HT Delhi is so full of politics, Samar's inclusion is not going to make any difference. The newsroom is a snake-pit, with a lot of extremely, extremely mediocre people, with bloated egos. All of them play politics. How can things get worse? At least Samar has been out in the field and done honest reporting -- unlike the armchair analysts in HT who think they are be-all and end-all of news understanding. I mean, if ANYONE in HT realised what a good paper should look like, would they, DAY AFTER DAY, produce such crap? Bad copy, cliched language, terrible design, pathetic choice of photographs -- the list goes on. Net net, I think Samar will do a world of good to HT: he'll at least put some people (and their mediocrity) in their place. But what is the dope on the HT City editor Vasanta joining as resident editor?

Anonymous said...

The Vasantha bit is almost certain considering that the paper is being run by the marketing people and she is nothing but a good pimp in those terms (with the amount of money being spent on HT City's publicity, it seems people pay for the supplement and get the main paper free with it). In fact ht doesn't need an editor right now. With less people inside the newsroom, things seem to be pretty neat and much less politicised.

Anonymous said...

HT makes news always.

It is time to move on, as they say. HT needs an editor who can edit, restore news in the paper.

The new editor has to be a (wo)man who will clean the old muck, a difficult job though. The paper keeps changing design, what it needs is an editor who will restore good content in it.

The edit page has become a joke, HT City is pure marketing stuff, and the sports pages look crap. Filling acres of space with columnists is no good. They have one inhouse columnist called Pradeep Magazine, who writes only on BCCI, Modi in every piece. His lack of knowledge is appalling and he is a consultant who gets paid in lakhs. The woman who is sports editr writes about what time she wasked up to write her column.

Well, it reads no better than crap, which is what she must have been doing at 5am.

The new editor must be aware of all this. Sharks everywhere in HT building. Some are chameleons and rattle snakes which can't be seen.

Good luck to the new editor.

Anonymous said...

Best guy in HT to tell you who will become editor there is an old peon who has seen a dozen editors come and go.

He is also layin a wager on Samar now!

Interesting, isn't it.

Anonymous said...

Samar has been named Managing Editor.

Braking news. Sorry, breaking news

Anonymous said...

Heard rumours that Samar Harlankar has been named editor today morning. Anyone heard that? Also, heard that the Sports Woman went to Bombay to meet Samar a few days ago, and people here in HT are saying that he's going to be her new target now because that is how she gains power. If he has any sense, he will keep her a an arm's length. Or else, God save Samar now!

Anonymous said...

He's been named Managing Editor.
Vasantha Angamuthu is now Editor, Special Projects.
"In his new role, Samar will be responsible for the Delhi, Mumbai and Weekend editions, as well as Sports, Political, Online and Foreign Bureaus, all of which will report into him. Till we have an Editor-in-Chief, the Managing Editor along with HT Business, HT Cafe and HT City will report to me, and all other editorial departments and locations will be coordinated by the Managing Editor. Samar will relocate to Delhi to take up his new responsibilities," said a mail from upstairs.
Hope Harlankar discourages whoring in HT, at least.

Anonymous said...

Hope so. Samar knows what happened to Pankaj Paul after he got cozy with this Sports Woman in office, and I think he has the sense to spurn her advances. She however specializes in getting close to men in power, that's how she derives her power. If Samar fails to keep her away, we'll have more fodder for gossip. And maybe a new managing editor.

Anonymous said...

Very strange as always we learnt our basics,we shoudnt speculate and creat impressions.The sports woman had gone to mumbai to attend the birthday party of Dhoni and Samar was not in town the same day.Ifeel we have professional jelosy here against the lady .Poor journalism and shame on our community.
I saw lots of things written about pankaj as well.Again lots of speculation there.He was given a private farewell by almost 90% of the top journos in HT.Does that say any thing.And yes Samar to respected him alot.So where are these things comming from.We are ademocratic country please speak your mind but speak responsibly.We are journos and not gods.Remember it could happen to you as well.By the way what if our famalies and kids read this .What would they think about the level of journalism.As it is very few youngsters want to become journalists.So let us be professionals as the world is watching us from aclose distance.Any journalist who reads this blog knows where the comments are comming from.(and blogmaster has the IP too)So guys let us stand up and take our profession to new level by being constructive and not negative.Let us not be frogs in a well.
Kudos to blogmaster for his stand .

KKR said...

Guys get a life. Either you all are some losers. who after work or while working have time to discuss all this rubbish... how would it anyways bother you what is happening in HT and even if it does, writing here wouldn't make any difference. so get a life and stop acting like the last benchers in the class who always come last in the class and because of their own incapabilities they can't perform and try to blame the politics in office. LOSERS