Top Story

e4m_logo.png

Home >> Advertising >> Article

Dr Subhash Chandra questions News Media ownership in India

07-August-2015
Font Size   16
Dr Subhash Chandra questions News Media ownership in India

With the growing number of television channels, the critical issue facing the news media industry today is about ownership and security licenses of these mushrooming channels. The industry is in dire need of a proper regulatory framework, to create stricter entry checks.

Concerned about the issue,  Dr Subhash Chandra, Chairman, Essel Group opines, “The media houses were started by our freedom fighters, like Raja Ram Mohan Roy to inform and empower people. However today, a few entities have started news media businesses as a shield for their illegal activities. Regulatory complexities are a concern for the industry and with skewed business models, no serious corporate wants to invest in this industry. It is high time we realize the need for a defined framework of rules under the media regulator in order to screen out these illegal players.”

Media is a soft power which in a large democracy like ours creates public opinion so that the other pillars of the society like the executive, legislature, judiciary and even business, do not use the democracy for their own gains. The TV medium is different from the print medium, as newspapers are read only by the educated class. But television being a mass medium has a far deeper penetration, reaching even the remote rural areas of the country and in their respective regional languages. Hence, television as a medium has a far greater impact on the society.

The Reserve Bank of India applies ‘fit and proper’ criteria before issuing any permission for entities entering into the financial services. The criteria unveils the corporate whole and searches for sources of funds as well as the relationship of the promoters in a vertical and horizontal manner, as these services impact the finances of the common man. So the question to be asked is, ‘Is protecting the common man’s mind from getting misled and polluted less important than protecting one’s money?’

Elaborating further, Dr. Chandra said, “Today, ownership of media, particularly of news channels is opaque. We should not be surprised if some of these news channels are owned by underworld elements. The need of the hour is to have a media council with robust media ethics and code of conduct, similar to the due diligence as provided in the Banking sector by the RBI.”

Re-iterating the need for transparent media operations, Dr. Chandra emphasized, “The criticality of the industry players coming together to raise a joint voice on these crucial issues.”

Recently, Zee Business channel brought this issue to light with a compelling discussion on media ownership and transparency. You can watch it here:

https://youtu.be/3FSbE8MPiZc

Tags Subhash Chandra Essel Group

Vijay Mansukhani, speaks to exchange4media about the resurgence of Onida, the scope of growth of consumer electronics market in India and the reasons why Indian consumer electronics brands don’t compete on a global scale

Projjol Banerjea opens up about hiring Anne Macdonald and GroupM's Rob Norman, and the brand's new identity

Meera Iyer tells exchange4media that in FY 2016/17, bigbasket clocked a revenue of Rs 1,400 crore. The online supermarket currently stands at 70,000 orders a day, with operations in 25 cities.

CMO, Kashyap Vadapalli on the start-up’s marketing play, why it has decided to stay away from IPL and response to its furniture rental apps

Ushering the launch with a campaign titled ‘The New Way to Get Rich’ showcasing how technology gets millennials closer to their financial dreams

Ogilvy and Love Matters conceptualised a campaign that aimed to change the conversation and imagery that is associated with the LGBTQ community and lesbians in particular