Friday, November 17, 2006

ToI in Nagpur, Hitavada's citadel

Times of India has started has a satellite edition from Nagpur. Will it be able to make a dent into the readership of the local leader, The Hitavada?

Over the years Hitavada has grown from strength to strength and no national daily has been able to get a foothold in the Orange City. First the Indian Express tried unsuccessfully and had to shut the shop. Later on Hindustan Times tried its best but the paper just didn't pick up and remained at a mere 5,000-6,000.

However, after HT's arrival, Hitavada's circulation went up to 40,000. Eventually HT withdrew and decided to go to Mumbai so as to make it more acceptable to Marathi reader. Now ToI, has decided to expand its readership and go to Nagpur. For over a century this paper has been published from Mumbai but they never went to Nagpur. This time also it seems Times is just experimenting. At Rs 1.5, a satellite edition with some staff in Nagpur, the paper has begun publication.


Unknown said...

The Hitavada is the morning tea of Nagpur and people are so addicted that rarely there is a chance of any other National daily to catch up with Hitavada. Its the pulse of Orange city you cannot take it out..............
Bishwajit Chakraborty

Anonymous said...

Hitavada.. peep in to the past

Hitavada, Nagpur has an eminent history. It was founded by the likes of Gokhale and Dravid of Servants of India Society in year 1911 and thus would be celebrating its centenary in year 2011. The newspaper was blessed with some of the tallest journalists of our country. The most remarkable amongst them were Late A.D.Mani and Late G.T.Parande. Mr. G.T.Parande joined the news paper as a cub sports reporter and through his sheer journalistic acumen and dedication rose to become its editor and later the Ombudsman and finally Editorial Advisor. He had an association with the Hitavada for almost 50 years. During his innings with the Hitavada, the Hitavada faced some turbulent times also but sailed through the same solely because of his efforts and leadership.

Late G.T.Parande, who was widely known by his sobriquet “Bapusaheb” was essentially a teacher and this his quality remained un affected even while he got himself immersed in the hazardous and poorly paid profession of a journalist. Journalist he was no doubt and one of the most devoted and respected in the field but he was also a teacher, a sportsperson, a born lover of nature and adventure and above all a friend and guide to innumerable people, who found in him a true path finder. His early years as teacher in the Hadas High School were years of extreme hardship but dedication to the institution and he was among the few who shaped and moulded the Hadas High School as a premier educational institute in the city of Nagpur. As a teacher, a whole lot generation would remember him for his guidance and also for his penchant for disciplined behaviour. This streak of the teacher came out in greater abundance when he taught at Nagpur University’s Department of Journalism. He even headed the department but as a teacher, he was the role model for other teachers. Hundreds of holders of the degree in journalism would ever remain grateful to him for his valued guidance. He would do his homework well before engaging a class and that was one reason why several universities across the country pressed him to assist their departments of journalism and mass communication. He was among the chosen few who were frequently called by various universities. He was honoured for his services to the cause of teaching journalism.

Journalism was a passion with G.T.Parande. Beginning his career as a sports reporter he rose to become Editor of Hitavada. But sports remained one of his undying passions and this was no better revealed than when, at the age of 68 years, he hopped from place to place to cover the Reliance World Cup Fixtures. His love for sports had endowed him with a very broad vision and objectivity which he practiced in the field of journalism. He considered objectivity as the hall mark of good and fair journalism. His devotion dedication to the “Hitavada” was unique. He had, in fact, identified himself with the newspaper whether it was run by the Servants of India Society or the Purohits. The changes in its ownership and ideological intransigence did not diminish his faith in the newspaper with which he was connected. He stood by it in the most difficult of times and even led a team of workers to experiment with a workers cooperative to run the newspaper successfully in its dark phase. He was instrumental in resuming its publication after the paper was closed down for a while in late seventies. As a sports reporter or as the editor of a newspaper, he was known for his fair play. That was one dictum that was dear to his heart and this he practiced with complete conviction. It was under his leadership that a new generation of journalists grew up and achieved prominence elsewhere as well. He was one editor who had no belief in the much touted “editorial arrogance” the most editors practice. It would sound conventional but fair play also is part of good journalism. With him it was not mere idealism. He practiced it as a sports reporter and also as the editor who assured fair play even to his critics as well.

For most journalists, retirement is the end of the road in the profession, but with Mr. Parande it was quite different and his involvement in the profession making it more relevant to the times was very apparent. Even to the last day of his life, he was actively involved in it which remained his consuming passion. Almost equal was his involvement with the mass communication department of Nagpur University where he taught for scores of years and with undiminishing enthusiasm. The depth of his knowledge in his all chosen fields was mainly because of his interest in everything that makes life meaningful. And he would also search for meaning in things that ordinary people would find dull and drab. That endowed him with a unique sense of humour.

It is hoped that Late Mr. G.T.Parande is remembered for his selfless invaluable service to journalism and Hitavada and duly honoured at the time of the centenary celebrations of Hitavada.

Anonymous said...

Ah, This is great! Dispells
several misnomers I've seen

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