Patna: As the present government in Bihar is over-obsessed with publicity it does not mind giving advertisements to any newspaper even if it exists literally on paper. So an analysis of some of the newspapers published in Bihar, especially in Patna, reveals some startling facts. Circulation of many newspapers of the state, mainly of Urdu and small Hindi dailies, is much more than several English and Hindi national dailies.
In league with the officials of the public relations department of the state these newspaper managements show their inflated figure to take more and more advertisement. As the advertisement rate or DAVP rate per square centimetre has much to do with the circulation of the dailies, officials and newspaper owners are hand-in-glove in this big loot in the public money––all in the name of publicity. For example take the circulation of the Patna edition of Quami Tanzeem, said to be the largest selling Urdu daily of Bihar. As per the information procured from the Right to Information by RTI activist, Purader Sawarnya, the daily has the circulation of 69,300 while its Ranchi edition sells 57,810 copies daily.
The circulation of Farooqui Tanzeem, Patna and Ranchi editions are 56,479 and 56,026 respectively. Another Patna-based Urdu daily Pindaar sells 57,147 copies, while Sangam, which is owned by the former Janata Dal (United) MP, Dr Ejaz Ali, has the circulation of 67,050 and Inquilab Jadeed 59,112.
However, these are the newspapers which are visible in the stand and are carried by almost all the hawkers. But there are several other Urdu dailies which can hardly be seen in any stand even in the city of their publication yet their circulation is unbelievably high. For instance, Pyari Urdu (Patna) has the circulation of 54,052 and Musalas (Patna) 46,800 while Halat-e-Bihar, which is published from Samastipur boasts of the circulation of 61,012.Pyari Urdu belongs to the Janata Dal (United) MLA, Izhar Ahmad.
Would you like to know the circulation of Patna edition of the Times of India. According to the same RTI report the circulation of its Patna edition is just 49,004, that is much less than all the above Urdu dailies. The Times of India is the largest circulated English daily in India.
Similarly, Desh Videsh and Nai Baat, both from Bhagalpur, have the circulation of 59,112 and 57,250 copies respectively.
Hindi daily from Muzaffarpur, Pratah Kamal, has the circulation of 61,233 whereas the figures for Muzaffarpur edition of Hindustan and Dainik Jagaran stand at 1,16,488 and 80,329 respectively.
The circulation of Patna edition of Hindustan and Dainik Jagaran is 3,03,804 and 1,59,249 respectively. The detail of their other editions can be found in the attached lists.
The circulation of the above dailies does not suggest that the number of Urdu-readers have suddenly jumped many times in the last five years. In fact their numbers is shrinking as more and more Urdu-readers are switching over to English and Hindi dailies. Their number have only increased on paper. Sources close to the two prominent dailies of the state told BiharTimes that actually their circulation is not even one-fifth or one-eighth of what they are projecting. In some other cases the circulation is in hundreds.
As it is necessary for a Hindi, English and Urdu dailies to have the circulation of 45,000, 25,000 and 20,000 respectively to get empanelled by the PRD the management of newspapers show inflated figure to reach that objective. Apart from the Times of India no other English newspaper from Bihar is at present touching that figure.
But the problem with Urdu dailies and small Hindi newspaper is that they are not run by any corporate house and they hardly get any advertisement other than that from the government. Therefore, they indulge in all the wrong practices. The Rashtriya Sahara (Urdu) is the exception. It is owned by a big business house, the Sahara Group. Now Jagaran is also coming up with its Urdu daily.
However, Urdu-readers are, in general, quite upset by the way these dailies of Bihar are, of late, behaving. Said Shakeel Hasan, retired Deputy Chief Personnel and Legal Manager, Coal India Limited: ‘The truth is that the Urdu dailies of Bihar are doing great disservice to the Urdu readers by compromising their stand just for the sake of business.’
On the other hand Zafar Imam Ansari, President, Momin Conference, Bihar, was more critical. ‘Urdu newspapers claim that they represent Muslims. The truth is that they are the greatest enemies of the community. We have planned to burn their copies in Patna shortly as they are playing into the hands of the state government,’ he added. साभार : द बिहार टाइम्स