Is The Hindu newspaper trying to kill its readers? The paper literally reeks of pesticide or some potent chemical!

This post has been updated with new developments. Scroll down to the end of this blog post.
Probably the work of that American mole who was its editor for the last few years.

In his defence of the newspaper against news from the Internet, the late columnist Art Buchwald said that a newspaper (among other things) can be used to wrap fish. With the Bangalore edition of The Hindu, even that is not possible!

The paper exudes the fresh aroma of Bhopal immediately after the Union Carbide plant meltdown. The newspaper boy throws the newspaper to the balcony and it stays there. I don’t bring it inside the house.

PHOTO-TheHindu-Newspaper-reeks-of-pesticide

The Hindu newspaper does not pass the smell test.

Initially, I thought this was the handiwork of the International Society for the Admiration and Worship of Moral Volcano. Apparently, not. A co-worker confirmed that his in-law faces the same problem. He apparently leaves his copy of The Hindu out in the sun for the whole day and reads it in the evening.

Of course, not everyone is that patient. The paper may be losing patrons unknown to its owners. This may be the work of the Americans who were upset with the recent change in the editorship of the paper.

For over hundred years, The Hindu was ably managed by its owners who also edited the paper. They started the paper to serve the nation and did a great job. I started reading the paper when N Ravi was the editor. That was the time when The Hindu was at its height. Everyone knew that the paper was objective to a fault. Today, the paper is unapproachable for a different reason.

For some reason, the board of Kasturi & Sons. put N. Ram in charge of the paper. N. Ram was earlier the editor of the Frontline magazine of the same group. N. Ram got the paper in trouble with his constant needling of J Jayalalitha and her government. Jayalalitha reacted with threats and then with force. This upset N. Ram’s critical thinking capabilities. He then abandoned the paper’s age-old hands-off approach to politics. N. Ram allied with the DMK and the Congress. When Sonia Gandhi gave her first speech in parliament (that is she read from a paper), all Indian newspapers panned her performance. Exception, of course, was The Hindu. N. Ram. published a front-page editorial eulogising her ridiculous performance. What a shame! The paper also played host to well-known foreign stringers such as C Raja Mohan, Gail Omvedt and Kuldip Nayyar. They carried on a pro-America but distinctly anti-Indian propaganda war using the newspaper. N. Ram did bring in P Sainath, who helped draw attention to the sufferings of rural and backward communities. Initially, Sainath’s article appeared on Sundays and I was always depressed after reading them. Fortunately, The Hindu made him Rural Affairs editor and his articles appeared on weekdays. The worst decision that N. Ram made was letting Siddarth Varadarajan join the paper. In the old template of this Web log, I had the following paragraph about The Hindu:

In the U.S., Fox News claims to have a “fair and balanced” editorial policy. They implement it by adding faux news to great effect. In India, The Hindu maintains a balanced approach by swinging to extremes. If C. Raja Mohan was peddling stories for the U.S. government, then there is another guy, Siddarth Varadarajan, to peddle stories for all things Communist. His articles are built around the political agenda of the Communists, both from India and outside. Whether it is Maoists of Nepal who are waging a war against everyone or Chinese firms who are being denied business opportunities on the security grounds, you can count on this guy to make a case for them. (Of course, the current National Security Council’s sole purpose is to help Western companies by blacklisting Chinese companies but that’s besides the point.) Maybe he is just a regular stringer who gets most of his persuasion from the Left. [Found this in my referrer logs, a page from the discussion forum Bharat-Rakshak: Opinion about C. Raja Mohan ranged from “Drinking all the kool aid supplied by the US state dept. must be messing with his head.” to “he is total sold out to green backs”.]

In Bangalore, I bought Deccan Herald. It is a good newspaper and the supplements have good articles on arts, science, tourism, history, etc. The Herald has a daily dose of celebrity news in but not as much as other newspapers. I wanted a newspaper with zero celebrity news – one that could be read by school children. This was one of the reasons that parents all over the country recommended their children to read The Hindu. (I believe celebutard news is meant to dumb-down the masses and these people will eventually stop reading newspapers and switch to celebrity news on TV.)

While I was with the Herald, I learned that N. Ram had allowed himself to be brainwashed totally by S. Varadarajan and let him take over the editor’s job. This was at a time when newspaper owners all round the world were being brainwashed by US think tanks “professionalize” their publications by moving out owner family members out of the editorial and the management and bringing in “professionals”. The change was sold to the public as making way for a “professional management” of the newspaper. This “professional management” snake-oil formula is a tried-and-tested technique used by the Rothschild-Rockefeller minions to take over well-established institutions that they have not been able to acquire or force into a debt trap.

Recently, I read that there was a change of mind at the board of Kasturi & Sons. The American mole was ousted and N. Ravi was made editor again. Malini Parthasarathy also rejoined the paper.

Appreciating the change, I switched from Deccan Herald to The Hindu last month. Unfortunately, it did not work out well.

Update: I changed the newspaper boy but the problem continued. I bought Hindu copies from news stalls picked at random. No problem with those papers. I moved to another state and subscribed for The Business Line (also from The Hindu group) and again the copies were stinking of pesticide. I would first dip it in a bucket and then dry it for an entire day. This meant that I could read late-breaking business news only in the evening and share purchase would have to be delayed by a day. I bought Business Line from stores several times but they did not have the problem. So, someone was forcing the newspaper boy to do this. The co-worker (who claimed that his relative also faced the same problem) turned to be a S.O.B. – in league with the same good-for-nothing a-holes.

Update 2: S. Varadarajan, after his ouster from The Hindu, it turns out, is the force behind The Wire, the online publication behind many scoops on the Modi government and its scams. Chitra Subramaniam, who was behind the Bofors revelations, has started The News Minute online news site. She has become 100% pro-Modi and is associated with Arnab Goswami’s Republic TV. The Wire has thousands of readers but its engagement stats on Twitter seems to have been suppressed under pressure from Modi government. Prashanth Bhushan has lots of Twitter followers but his channel on YouTube seems to have supressed statistics.