Residents of Hyderabad can now buy the International Herald Tribune, printed at the Deccan Chronicle press in the city, for Rs 30.
To be sure, it is not an Indian edition of the bestselling newspaper from the New York Times stable with 27 editions worldwide. Instead, it is an Indian newspaper with articles sourced from various places, including news agencies and the International Herald Tribune.
But the 18-page Hyderabad paper will not be heavy with International Herald Tribune news as government rules clearly lay down that syndicated material cannot exceed 7.5 per cent of the total editorial content in a newspaper. Anything above that needs specific clearance.
Midram Publications Ltd, a Hyderabad-based company, has registered the title “International Herald Tribune” with the Registrar of Newspapers of India.
To avoid any row over trademark in the future, it has got a no-objection certificate from the foreign newspaper, which has been filed with the local authorities.
It is worth noting that, as per rules, there can be no Indian edition of a foreign newspaper, though overseas investment of up to 26 per cent is allowed in Indian news publications.
The paper is being printed and published by T Venkat Ram Reddy on behalf of Midram Publications Ltd. Reddy is the proprietor of Deccan Chronicle. MJ Akbar, the editor-in-chief of The Asian Age and editor of Deccan Chronicle, is also the editor of the new newspaper. Reddy, on his part, is the chairman of the board of The Asian Age
Neither Reddy nor Akbar were available for comment. But sources close to the development said printing began on May 26 and on average some 20,000 copies were being printed daily.
Readers can subscribe to the paper by calling at 27803930, which is also the Deccan Chronicle number. However, sources close to the development said the paper was not being distributed by Deccan Chronicle, though Reddy was printing and publishing it.
When contacted, information and broadcasting ministry officials said they had not received any application so far for an Indian edition of the International Herald Tribune and, therefore, there was no question of approving the publication of the newspaper.