NEW YORK TIMES: edition, visibility, credibility, etc Journalist Nava Thakuria explains

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NY Times and Nava Jyoti Thakuria
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NEW YORK TIMES: edition, visibility, credibility, etc Journalist Nava Thakuria explains

Nava Thakuria
For some days, it has been widely discussed about the success stories
of Delhi government in both education and healthcare sectors. The well
wishers of Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) along with Delhi chief minister CM
Arvind Kejriwal and his deputy Manish Sisodia have flooded the social
media space with appreciative messages. Latey it was added colour by a
frontpage news item in The New York Times, where Delhi’s education
minister Sisodia was lauded for his innovative initiatives.

The article created sensation among the readers and it entered into a
controversy as the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leaders claimed it a
paid feature. A number of AAP leaders criticised the BJP led Narendra
Modi government in New Delhi alleging that the safron party could not
digest a positive story in America’s largest newspaper on Sisodia and
hence it engaged CBI and ED to harass him for ‘all wrong reasons’.

They went ahead claiming that the Kejriwal-Sisodia led AAP will make a
big difference in 2024 general elections where the Modi government
would face a ‘defeat’.

It may be mentioned that NYT on 18 August 2022 in its international
edition published a news-feature titled ‘Our children are worth it’
with two photographs (one featuring Sisodia too), where it narrated
the story of improving the government school education in the national
capital. Along with the infrastructure, the pupils have been provided
uniforms and mid-day meals there. The outcome is also astonishing as
100% of students passed 10 and 12th standard examinations, earlier
which was below 90 percent all the time.

CM Kejriwal, who was elected to the post in 2015, assured all possible
support to the schools with basic minimum facilities. Moreover, a
number of education experts have been engaged in designing new
curriculums in those institutions. Unlike other parts of India, where
students are leaving the government schools (to enrol in private
institutions), Delhi has now been witnessing a reverse process. AAP
leaders claim that nearly 250,000 students left private schools in
the last few years to join the government ones.

The Delhi government continues building new classrooms (if not the
school buildings) with essential facilities for toileting,
laboratories, sporting events, etc. Guardians of the students have
also been engaged in the process of decision making along with the
teachers (who are regularly trained) and concerned government
officers. The monthly meetings among them witness serious discussions
on various day to day affairs including the shortage of teachers in a
particular subject, which are solved with convictions.

The critical voice of BJP leaders against the news-feature was so loud
that the NYT had to make a clarification that the particular item was
based on impartial, on-the-ground reporting.

The influential newspaper, headquartered in New York, rejected the allegation of
advertorial arrangement to publish the news-feature. Its management
asserted that the journalism from NYT is always independent, free from
political or advertiser influence.

AAP leader Kejriwal in a recent tweet stated, ‘Delhi has made India
proud. Delhi model is on the front page of the biggest newspaper of
US. Manish Sisodia is the best education minister of independent
India’. Assumed as an honest politician by many Indians, Kejriwal also
did not bother to clarify that NYT did not publish the story in the
front page of its New York edition (but in its international edition).
He made the sweeping statement as if all editions of the biggest US
newspaper published the news-feature.

Questions may arise about why it is important to talk about an edition of a
newspaper in the days of world-wide-webs. But if one talks about the
front page of a newspaper, it should be clarified in which edition (or
was it in every edition) used the story. Pertinent observation.
remains, for reasons best known to the editor, NYT preferred the
intelligent American readers not to get the story in physical papers,
as it did not appear in the front page of the New York edition. The
impressive front page story in the international edition was not given
single column space in its local edition. Quite an amazing story!
The author is a northeast India-based journalist

***Views expressed is of Nava Thakura and published under the freedom of expression channel do not agree or disagree with the same.***

About Post Author

Editor Desk

Antara Tripathy M.Sc., B.Ed. by qualification and bring 15 years of media reporting experience.. Coverred many illustarted events like, G20, ICC,MCCI,British High Commission, Bangladesh etc. She took over from the founder Editor of IBG NEWS Suman Munshi (15/Mar/2012- 09/Aug/2018 and October 2020 to 13 June 2023).
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