Following the exit of Aaj Tak Executive Producer, Ashutosh, who joined IBN 7 (formerly Channel 7) as Managing Editor, another senior Aaj Tak staffer, Deputy Editor Mrityunjay Kumar Jha, has also put in his papers to join under his ex-colleague at IBN 7. Jha had served TV Today for 15 years and he was holding the responsibility of National Bureau Chief as well.
Aaj Tak News Director, Q W Naqwi, has confirmed the development to exchange4media.
Speaking to exchange4 media, Jha said that he would be joining IBN 7 in the first week of April and had requested the Aaj Tak management to waive off his one-month notice period. IBN 7 Managing Editor, Ashutosh has also confirmed that Jha would be joining as Executive Editor (Assignment).
Meanwhile, reliable sources in Aaj Tak and IBN-CNN said that a few other senior Aaj Tak staffers like Metro Bureau Head, Prabal Pratap Singh; Senior Special Correspondent, Sumit Awasthi; and Principal correspondent, Sukesh Ranjan were likely to leave shortly to join IBN 7.
When asked, Ashutosh admitted that the arrangement with Prabal Pratap Singh was being worked out to join as Executive Producer (Assignment), he however refused to reveal when Singh would be joining. Ashutosh also refused to comment on whether or not Aaj Tak staffers like Sumit Awasthi and Sukesh Ranjan were joining IBN 7.
Aaj Tak News Director Naqwi also refused to comment on the likelihood of more Aaj Tak editorial staff leaving the organisation.
Meanwhile, Aaj Tak honchos have already initiated the process to identify replacements for Mrityunjay Jha and some other senior staffers who are likely to bid adieu to the channel shortly. Sailesh, who was brought in as Executive Producer and given a special assignment to build a central copy desk, has been asked to fulfill the responsibility of Executive Producer (Assignment), the job which was earlier being handled by Ashutosh.
It is learnt that in order to keep the morale of its staffers high, particularly in the event of more Aaj Tak staffers leaving the organisation, the channel bosses have worked out a strategy to resort to in house promotions to fill the senior level vacancies when they fell vacant, while the junior level staffers will be taken from outside.