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Lokmat Samachar launches Pune edition

Maharashtra CM Prithviraj Chavan & Vijay Darda, Chairman,
Lokmat Media, with others at the launch of Pune edition
This is the sixth edition of the Hindi daily which first appeared in 1989 in Nagpur. The Pune edition has a cover price of Rs 3

Maharashtra Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan yesterday launched the 6th edition of Hindi daily Lokmat Samachar in Pune. The newspaper offering consists of the all-colour main paper of 12 pages along with a 4-pager Apna Pune that will detail local civic issues and also leisure options. There is also ‘For You’ for the young, ‘Sakhi’ for women and ‘Lokarang Sunday’ supplement that accompany the paper on three different days in a week. “Lokmat Samachar will enhance the quality of life in Pune and will make it more cosmopolitan,” Chavan said at the launch ceremony.
This is the sixth edition of the popular newspaper which first appeared in 1989 in Nagpur, and was thereafter launched in Aurangabad, Akola, Kolhapur and Jalgaon in that order. Lokmat Samachar has 13.56 lakh readers as per IRS 2012 Q1 AIR. The Pune edition has a cover price of Rs 3 plus an attractive subscription scheme that affords good savings.Present on the occasion were Minister of State for Education Rajendra Darda along with media personalities Balbir Punj (senior columnist and Rajya Sabha MP from Rajasthan), Prabhu Chawla (Editor-in-Chief, The New Indian Express), Tarun Tejpal (Editor-in-Chief –, and Vijay Darda, Rajya Sabha MP and Chairman of Lokmat Media.

A panel discussion on ‘The relationship between media and politicians’ was organised to mark the launch. “A journalist is also a politician. Not only should the media help in shaping public opinion, it should also play a critical part in the development of the political process,” the CM observed.Senior journalists and editors Chawla, Tejpal and Punj highlighted the increasing complexities of the media world, and the need to maintain a balance in giving coverage and direction. “Media is a fish that lives in the vast ocean of democracy,” said Punj. “Hence strengthening the media will result in the strengthening of democracy.”

Highlighting the sharp difference between the cover prices of newspapers in India and abroad, Tejpal pointed out that the readers India are not willing to pay enough money to run these institutions. “This is the structural flaw due to which quality deteriorates,” he said.Chawla decried the increasing incidence of ‘paid news’ inserted by politicians, due to which media is facing a credibility crisis. “Media has become a victim of this phenomenon,” he said. Speaking about the Pune edition of Lokmat Samachar, Rishi Darda, Joint Managing Director, Lokmat Media, said, “The Hindi-speaking population of Pune, which has emerged as an education hub and IT city, was in need of a national daily. Since Hindi is our national language and therefore connects people throughout the country, Lokmat Samachar would definitely fill the gap.”

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