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`Monopolistic trends in press not desirable'

Our Bureau

Visakhapatnam , Sept 18

India, which is a vast, diverse, pluralistic society, needs a great number of newspapers in English as well as Indian languages and therefore monopolistic trends are not desirable, said Mr N. Ram, Editor-in-chief of The Hindu.

He was delivering a lecture on Monday on current trends in Indian media at a function organised by the Centre for Policy Studies of the Gayatri Vidya Parishad.

Reviewing the media situation in India and the developed countries, he said: "The Indian print media is in a better position. We only see gloom there, with falling circulations and the younger generation switching over to other media."

The Indian press has to gear up for the challenges thrown up by the technological advancements, especially the Internet, he added.

Referring to what he characterised as the `great Indian media bazaar', Mr Ram said that diversity was the hallmark of the Indian media market.

"In the West, especially in the US, there are many towns where there is only one paper. Here we have many, which is quite desirable."

Remarking that the press should always be open to criticism from the public and take necessary corrective action, he referred to the appointment of an ombudsman (a readers' editor) by The Hindu for the purpose.

The response from the reading public was overwhelming, according to him.

He added that the response to the e-paper (digital edition) launched recently by newspaper has been very encouraging, with over 50,000 users having registered so far.

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