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Unpleasant Truth Editor-in-Chief Dr. A. K. Rastogi Sub Editors Vijay Bala Udey Bhan Mani Shankar Ojha Special Correspondent Dheeraj Technical Consultant Lt. Col. (Retd.) V. C. Khare National Ad Sales Anurag (9811120650) Ankush (9811913101) Subscription & Distribution Aman (Director) Tilak Raj (Executive) Creative Direction Bhuvnesh Ahuja Layout & Typesetting Kavita Bisht Administration Anurag Rastogi (M. D.) Varsha Marketing Advisor Vikas Arora, Subhash Grover Legal Consultants Surendra Singh (Maj. Retd.) R. T. Hingorani Ravi Sahgal Corporate & National Marketing Office Aavishkar Publications & Advertising A-3, IInd floor, TVS Building, G.T.K Road, Adarsh Nagar, Delhi-110033 Ph. : +91-11-2767 0410, Fax : +91-11-2768 2112 e-mail : For Marketing Enquiries Contact : Anurag (9811120650) For Subscription Details : Aman (9311110410) Editorial Office (for communication purpose) B-262, Indra Nagar, Delhi - 110 033 Ph. : +91-11-2767 2736 E-mail : Visit us at On the behalf of Aavishkar Publication Printed, Published & Owned By Ragini Rastogi and Printed at Bhawna Art Press, 7, Indra Nagar, Delhi - 110033 and Published from B-262, St.10, Indra Nagar, Delhi - 110033 Editor Anil K umar Rastogi Please note: Contents published in the advertisements are the sole views of the corresponding advertisers and publisher has no responsibility for any offending or competitive text or data. Unpleasant T r u t h The media watches everyone but itself, there is a question which should be asked How many ‘sting operations’ has the media done on any of its own, say on the ‘Paid News’ controversy? The morality of sting operations is a debatable topic but the larger point demanded a response. The media does investigative stories practically every week but does it deliberately avoid turning the gaze inwards? Is everything as it should be with the Indian media – newspapers or television channels? Even with the relatively free, noisy media we have it is difficult to answer that in the affirmative. Take the controversy over ‘paid news’ which involves entering into deals with politicians or corporates to pass off views and product promotion as news. The Press Council of India has set up a committee to look into it. It was reported that the committee has enough evidence. The Editors’ Guild denounced the phenomena of paid content. According to reports, some executives in the news business accept being paid for news in private but won’t do it in public. The upshot is hackneyed but bears repetition it is easier to preach and prescribe than practise. No exceptions or are there? Despite the economic downturn, India’s media have continued to grow, albeit at a slower rate in the past two years, though the prediction to return to double-digit growth in 2010 is made. Indian newspapers are thriving and TV news channels, both in English and in Indian languages, are multiplying. Competition is cut-throat, but the established groups are raking in huge profits. Media exposés have shown that several organisations have been selling news space to politicians at election time, disguising what are essentially adverts as news. The Press Council of India has set up a committee to investigate violations of the journalistic code of fair and objective reporting. The “paid news” phenomenon also violates an Election Commission rule that limits a candidate’s expenditure. The Hindu newspaper reported that while the chief minister of Maharashtra, Ashok Chavan, in elections to the state assembly, showed an expenditure of just £72 on advertising, stories extolling his achievements appeared for several days in rival newspapers. If the stories had been advertising, as they appeared to be, Chavan’s bill would have been many times higher. January 2010 | Aavishkar Dish Antenna Programme Guide | 7

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