The e4m News Broadcasting Awards 2011 was held amid praises heaped on TV news media for the way it handled the Anna Hazare struggle in New Delhi on August 27, 2011. Senior Congress leader Dr Karan Singh was the Chief Guest at the Awards ceremony. Aroon Purie, Founding Chairman and Editor-in-Chief, India Today Group, was conferred the Lifetime Achievement Award.
Delivering the opening address, Annurag Batra, Chairman and Editor-in-Chief, exchange4media Group, said, “It is the power of news media that has aided one man’s fight and helped the nation move towards the Jan Lokpal Bill. The e4m News Broadcasting Awards is a platform to felicitate broadcasters on their news coverage. They are often castigated for being insensitive or sensationalising news, but today, we have to congratulate them on their achievements.”
He then went on to thank the distinguished jury panel led by Jury Chairman Shekhar Gupta and took the audience through the elaborate three tier process for selecting the winners of the enba Awards.
A great potential force
Gupta then took the stage and spoke about the judging process. He divulged, “As Jury Chairman, I didn’t have to go through each and every entry received. The Jury panel was divided into sub-groups and they went through all the entries. My job was to go from sub-group to sub-group and take a look at what they had selected. The decision-making was fair.”
Calling the electronic media a “great potential force” Gupta noted that at the Parliamentary debate on the Lokpal Bill, which took place on August 27, 2011, several times reference was made to the role of the news media in the cause for the Jan Lokpal Bill and Anna Haraze’s fight.”
While this was cause célèbre, it was also a moment for great introspection, he added.
“For a while now, print media has assumed a patronising tone when talking to the broadcast media because print has been around for a longer time. But now, there is social media and we don’t really know how to control social media,” Gupta remarked.
He further quipped, “Being so long in the industry, I am kind of an ‘uncle’ figure to most of the people present here. And it is heartening to see the kind of work that they are doing. Especially the quality of work from regional media is quite good, in fact, at times enormously better than even the English media.”
Chief Guest Dr Karan Singh, who arrived a little late at the event owing to the debate in Parliament on the Lokpal Bill, remarked that it was day that was “drowned in an ocean of words”. He added, “I congratulate the television fraternity. This media has bloomed over the last 25 years. Today, news media has become very proactive. Television has emerged as the predominant form of information and entertainment. But at the same time, there is need for introspection too, as in their push to cover the news there is often move away from objectivity.”
He further said that more music was needed on television – be it rock or jazz or classical music. “We have to mainstream our music,” he stressed.
‘The payment has not been all that bad’
Amid the declaration of the winners, the hall exploded with applause when Aroon Purie’s name was announced as the recipient of the Lifetime Achievement Award. In his acceptance speech, Purie remarked, “I don’t deserve this award as I am still a work in progress. But I am happy to receive this award on such a momentous day when the Lokpal Bill is being debated in Parliament. This is great for democracy. ”
“Media had a great role to play in this entire episode and has been commended for it. We have often see politicians hitting out at the media when they get into trouble, but I would say they tend to shoot the messenger. We just report what we see,” he added.
Purie further said, “I enjoy every moment of the work that I do and it would be the same even if I weren’t paid for it. And the payment has not been all that bad!”
The complete list of award winners:
Best Current Affairs Programme – Aajcha Awaal, IBN Lokmat
Best Business Programme – Debt to Life, Bloomberg UTV
Best Talk Show – In Conversation with Saeed Naqvi, NewsX
Best In-depth Series – Dantewada Massacre, NDTV 24x7
Best In-Show Graphics – Sports Quarter, Headlines Today
Best News Coverage – National – Documentary ‘Janbaaz Parinde’, NDTV India
Best News Coverage – International – Road to Jaffna, NDTV 24x7
Best Anchor – Nidhi Razdan, NDTV 24x7
Best Spot News Reporting – Suhasini Haidar, CNN-IBN
Best Continuing Coverage by a Reporter – Gaurav Sawant (Libya Uprising), Aaj Tak
Best Video Editor – Arif Patel, CNN-IBN
Best News Producer – Siddharth Ghosh (In Focus), Bloomberg UTV
Special Awards In Indian Languages:
Best News Programme in Hindi – Shakha 9, TV 9 Maharashtra
Best News Programme in Kannada – Bangarada Panjara, TV 9 Karnataka
Best News Programme in Marathi – Aajcha Sawaal, IBN Lokmat
Best News Programme in Punjabi – Victims stranded on ship in Cameroon, PTC News
Best Integration of a Brand in a News Programme – Ente Vartha, Manorama News
Best Public Service Campaign for a Brand by a News Channel – Save Our Tigers Telethon, NDTV 24x7
Best Channel Marketing – Bloomberg Connect, Bloomberg UTV
Best Channel or Programme Promo – D Street Ka Don, Zee Business
Best Website – ibnlive.com, CNN-IBN
Overall Excellence Awards:
Young Professional of the Year – Editorial – Smitha Nair, CNN-IBN
News Channel of the Year (English) – NDTV 24x7
News Channel of the Year (Indian language) – Star News
News Television CEO of the Year – N Dilip Venkatraman, CNN-IBN
News Television Editor-in-Chief of the Year – Nikhil Wagle, IBN Lokmat
Lifetime Achievement Award – Aroon Purie, India Today Group