Asian Lite, UK won ‘How Do’ award without psychics, astrologers or sex ads!

In the papers five-year history, we never took a single advert of psychics, astrologers, faith healers or premium-priced sex chat lines. Journalism is more than a business and we are trying our best to serve the community in a better way. We follow a strict advertising policy to protect the readers from the clutches of psychics and the sex industry.” 

said, Anasudin Azeez, Editor of Asian Lite, a fortnightly focussing on British Asian events and issues who recently won the prestigious How-Do newspaper of the year award for 2012.The panel also praised the newspaper’s quality, creativity and producing the contents ‘appropriate to that target audience’.

Azeez, who hails from Palakkad district in Kerala said the How-Do award will inspire the editorial team to stick with its policies to bring back the missionary values of journalism.

The award committee said Asian Lite, published by New Asian Media Ltd, bucked the current British trends in declining sales and circulation in publishing and derived innovative solutions to identify new models and revenue streams.

A judging panel comprising BBC veteran Jim Hancock and Google’s Andy Barke selected Asian Lite as the Newspaper of the Year 2012 from the short-list of eight leading British titles, including Rupert Murdoch-owned News Corporations’ The Times; Newsquest’s The Bolton News and Johnston Press Group’s Lancaster Guardian. Asian Lite was the only British ethnic media title shortlisted in the 18 award categories. The award ceremony was held at the prestigious Lancashire County Cricket Club and attended by several media personalities and industry leaders, a statement said.

Padmashri Dr. Girish Kasaravalli supports’No Dubbing in Kannada’

On the reported statement that I would give my life to stop dubbing taking entry to Kannada cinema on 84th birth anniversary of Dr Rajakumar at Dr Rajakumar Memorial on 24th April, Shivarajakumarhas got wonderful support from the media and some of the bigwigs of the Kannada cinema industry.

The most important phone call  Shivarajakumar remembered today at Charminar Kannada film launch speaking to media is the one from one of the pioneers of parallel cinema Padmasri Dr Girish Kasaravalli. You have made the right statement at the right time said Dr GK to Shivarajakumar.

Actor Vijay, producer MR Pattabhiram and various others said we would follow Shivarajakumar is a good sign of development informed Shiv. At the Charminar briefing Shivarajakumar sitting with Premkumar and director R Chandru on the spot got the support. Lovely star Premkumar said I would Shivanna in this issue of dubbing ban. R Chandru went a step ahead and said he would give life for Shivarajakumar.

Shivararajakumar politely stated that even television media has to mend in a different way. The channels while making the calls they should not control it.

On the dubbing issue I am not against to the law. We should protect our mother and mother tongue is my sole intention. The issue of egoism is causing disturbances here in Kannada filmdom. From the statement on that day half are scared disclosed Shivarajakumar.

India’s Young Social Reformer: Mittal Patel

Mittal Patel: A journalist and a social reformer.

More than four million nomads reside in Gujarat and approximately 60 million exist in the country. It was shocking to find there was no data or information available on them even in the government departments. Though the government is aware of certain communities, to avail of the benefits, people are supposed to submit a number of documents. These, unfortunately, they did not possess. The benefits, therefore, reached them in a very limited way. We are now working for 40 nomadic and de-notified tribes in eight districts of Gujarat. 

says, Mittal Patel, a young gold medallist in journalism from Gujarat University, has been trying to give a voice to nomadic tribes for the last six years.

Running an NGO, Vicharata Samuday Samarthan Manch, Patel has aided thousands with fading livelihoods, whose existence was hardly recognised or acknowledged by the state or the central government.

Nomads earlier provided services such as sharpening knives and weapons, repairing tools and supplied a variety of goods including ornaments, perfumes and medicinal herbs. During the days of princely states, they accompanied a king’s convoy to help them repair their carts. But due to industrialisation, traditional occupations became non-existent for them.

Mittal has been striving to find alternative employment for men and women and is working towards providing educational facilities for the children. She has been instrumental in helping them claim land rights, getting voter ID cards and fighting with bureaucrats to extend welfare schemes for them.

Click to Read the full interview taken by Nilima Pathak for the Gulf News

Kannada people vs the Kannada film lobby??

The Kannada media industry now wants no movies/shows to be dubbed in Kannada. There are statements and articles by Kannada media personalities protesting against dubbed movies and even TV shows like Aamir Khan‘s Satyameva Jayate. They claim that dubbed movies/shows will eat into their market and strangle the Kannada industry.

It is very easy to raise popular support by claiming it is for the good of Kannada. I’d like to analyse whether such a move would actually benefit the Kannada people or just the pockets of the Kannada film lobby.
The Kannada Film industry through its lobbying over the years enjoys several protectionist measures including subsidies, 100% tax concession, restrictions on the way other language movies release in Karnataka, etc. It is almost an universal law that protected industries always tend to lag in quality, technology and innovation.
Even a Kannada fanatic would be hard pressed to say that better quality movies/entertainment have been produced because of these protectionist regulations. Kannada movies have long stopped entertaining the discerning audience and remain the staple for those cannot access other forms of entertainment. Even an occasional well made movie finds it tough to attract the former due to the morass of bad quality movies it is hidden amongst [every one of them taking a chunk of out of the tax money, mind you].
It shows the declining quality of Kannada movies/shows if people will prefer watching badly lip synced dub versions of other language films and shows. And why should the people of Karnataka not have the option to do so. It is in their interests and rights to gain access to more and better entertainment which their own media industry has failed to satisfy and is always trying to smother.
These protectionist measures supported by a few media gimmicks, goonda tactics against those do not agree and political connections serve only to protect the pockets and interests of the rich dudes who run the industry. They neither benefit the Kannada culture nor the Kannada people. Talibanisation does not benefit anybody except those who preach it.
Deregulating the industry will force the industry players to change and face open competition. Some will go bust but at the same time it will open doors for new players who have the what the audience enjoys.
The release restrictions are being stayed in courts and a recent Supreme Court judgement regarding AP might end the regime of tax concessions. In this age of increasing awareness and increased channels of media consumption, the out-dated barons of the industry face a downward path and are trying to prolong their exit. It is they who are strangling the Kannada media industry. What remains to be seen is, if the Kannada people continue to allow this by actively/passively supporting such short sighted measures and allow the Kannada media industry to roll into the valley of irrelevance. (courtesy: Ajey)

Aishwarya Rai Attacked Over “Double Chin” Photo

Aishwarya Rai Bachchan recently attending the Ambani party.

Another day, another catty article in the Indian media about Aishwarya Rai’s weight. Aishwarya was snapped in an unflattering position in the backseat of a car (no, not that kind of unflattering position!) and the press took the opportunity to completely trash her for it. Her crime? Having a double chin! And not even a real double chin, just the kind you get when you pull your head back a bit. courtesy: Renee Shah & CELEBS

ish was on her way to the big bash thrown by Mukesh Ambani for U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon when the photo was taken. That photo–probably the most unflattering one of her in existence–has since made the front pages of not just entertainment websites but of major Indian (and overseas) newspapers.

Bollywood Life, in its usual “let’s fake concern to hide our inexcusable rudeness” attitude, ran the photo with the ridiculous headline “Aishwarya Rai Bachchan’s got a double chin!” and pretended to be worried that something was wrong with her for not being thin yet like “other” new mothers. (Makes you wonder what the article’s author looks like, doesn’t it? The weight-obsessed members of the gossip media don’t often have room to talk when it comes to the issue.)

Apparently, being a former beauty queen means one is never ever allowed to put on so much as a kilo–and if you do dare to gain weight at some point in your life you’ve implicitly given the media permission to be over the top rude about it.

So Aishwarya hasn’t lost all of her baby weight yet. Who cares? She obviously doesn’t. This song and dance about Aishwarya’s weight by the Indian media is getting old.

Singhvi Sexcapade: Social media did not violate any high court order

Singhvi in Catch-22 situation: If Singhvi claims right to privacy (in this case),he will he would have to admit the contents of the clip was correct.

Video clippings allegedly featuring Senior Advocate and former Congress Spokesperson, Abhishek Manu Singhvi has quite literally been all over the internet. Although Singhvi was quick in securing an ex parte injunction from the Delhi High Court against three media houses who were in possession of the CD, by then the damage had already been done with the video going viral on the internet.

social media did not violate any high court order..” 

says, Apar Gupta, Partner at Advani & Co, a reputed law firm. He said in an interview given to  Bar & Bench (http://www.barandbench.com), a legal matters related website that,

“… the Delhi High Court granted an interim injunction against the driver who captured and morphed the footage.., and some television news broadcasters ( Aaj Tak, Headlines Today and the India Today Group). The interim injunction was not a John Doe injunction and would not have been applicable against any other parties except the ones, which were named as defendants in the suit…”

Pranesh Prakash of Centre of Internet and Society, another legal expert in these matters opined that:

“…. sites such as YouTube are not broadcasting sites, rather they are being used to broadcast. This distinction, which is not important when it comes to television, is critical when it comes to user-uploaded content and user-generated content. Given that there are thousands of video-sharing websites, there is no way of ensuring that all of them comply with an Indian court order. “

Asked whether public figures have a right to privacy, Apar Gupta said:

“…If (in Singhvi’s case)  privacy would have been claimed, Dr. Singhvi would have been in a unique catch-22 where to claim privacy he would have to admit the contents of the clip (if not the clip in its entirety) was correct. Hence, defamation is an easier ground where he can claim the clip was morphed and hence untrue….”

Can Abhishek Manu Singhvi file a case of defamation against the social media websites for posting the contents of the CD on their websites, Apar gupta says:

” ….Social media websites are only a platform. The case would be on firm legal footing if he gave notice to the social media websites as to the precise URL which contained the defamatory contents and they failed to act within 36 hours to take it down as per the Information Technology (Intermediaries Guidelines) Rules, 2011. I would also anticipate that if such a case was filed, social media websites would plead innocent dissemination as a defense.”

To the same question Pranesh Prakash says:

Again, I must clarify that social media websites have not posted the contents of the CD on their websites. Users of social media websites have done so.Should Mr. Singhvi be able to? The answer, I believe, should depend on whether the social media platforms were informed about the conduct of unlawful activity on their platforms and still chose not to remove it. The determination of unlawful activity should ideally be from a court. This, I believe is the correct interpretation of Section 79(3) of the IT Act, which deals with intermediary liability.

Read the full interview : Bar & Bench 

If Loksabha, a bat would really have come in handy to Sachin

Tunku Varadarajan writes in his column The World On A Page in The Newsweek International

Little Master, M.P.

Until now, the only argument Indians have had over Sachin Tendulkar is whether he is the greatest cricketer ever to have played the game, or merely the greatest Indian cricketer. But with his nomination to the Rajya Sabha—the Indian parliament’s upper house—some of his fussier compatriots are asking what (if any) skills the batsman possesses that would equip him for a legislature. Tendulkar, known to the game’s followers as the “little master,” is a notably apolitical man. He will be the first active sportsman to sit in the upper house, a sedate institution when compared with the Lok Sabha, or lower house—where a bat would really have come in handy.

Tunku Varadarajan is the editor of Newsweek International. He is also the Virginia Hobbs Carpenter Fellow in Journalism at Stanford’s Hoover Institution. He was an editor at the Wall Street Journal from 2000 to 2007.