On Thursday, Chairperson of the Hindu Publishing Group Malini Parthasarathy posted a tweet informing that she met Prime Minister Narendra Modi. However, this has not gone down well with N Ram, the director of the group, who distanced himself from the meeting and hinted that Parthasarathy is squandering away the reputation of the left-wing publication by meeting a right-wing prime minister.
Had the privilege of calling on Prime Minister @narendramodi today & had an illuminating conversation in which he shared his perspective on issues of current public interest. pic.twitter.com/dUTjxtXbMF— Malini Parthasarathy (@MaliniP) July 22, 2021
N Ram was responding to a Twitter user who had asked why “Hindu’s hard earned legacy is being squandered away”, referring to the tweet of Malini Parthasarathy. She had posted a photograph of her meeting with PM Modi, informing that she had an “illuminating conversation in which he (the PM) shared his perspective on issues of current public interest.”
Responding to the query by the Twitter user with the handle @Mrs_DoSoLittle, N Ram retorted that he has ‘nothing to do with this’. He also seemed to agree with the view that Malini Parthasarathy is squandering away the legacy and reputation of the Hindu Group by having a discussion with Narendra Modi. He replied: What I can assure you is that we will do our very best to prevent The Hindu’s “hard-earned” reputation and legacy of 142+ years “being squandered away”.
I have nothing to do with this. What I can assure you is that we will do our very best to prevent The Hindu’s “hard-earned” reputation and legacy of 142+ years “being squandered away”. https://t.co/xRe3QK5UxU— N. Ram (@nramind) July 23, 2021
However, Malini did not remain silent over this grave allegation made against her by the former editor-in-chief of the Hindu newspaper. She tweeted that the 142+ years of hard-earned reputation of the publication does not get destroyed by meeting the prime minister, as N Ram thinks. She tweeted, ‘Our 142+ years of hard-earned reputation was built by reporting that was factual & not driven by political prejudice or bias.’
She then went on to imply that the reputation of The Hindu was actually squandered way under the leadership of N Ram, which she is trying to restore. She added, We @thehindu are determined to restore the honesty & credibility of our reporting & commentary. This is the only way forward to revive our great legacy’.
Our 142+ years of hard-earned reputation was built by reporting that was factual & not driven by political prejudice or bias. We @the_hindu are determined to restore the honesty & credibility of our reporting & commentary. This is the only way forward to revive our great legacy. https://t.co/6oQg9GRblY— Malini Parthasarathy (@MaliniP) July 24, 2021
By saying that they are determined to ‘restore’ the honesty & credibility of the reporting and commentary of The Hindu, Malini Parthasarathy implied that it has been lost. As N Ram was the editor-in-chief of the publication earlier, it is no doubt that she is saying the reputation and credibility was lost during his tenure.
This is not the first time the top two journalists associated with The Hindu exchanged barbs on social media. While N Ram continues to peddle the lie that there was a scam in the Rafale fighter deal, Malini had called for accepting the Supreme Court verdict in the matter, and had also said that she personally believes that the integrity of Prime Minister Narendra Modi is unimpeachable and unquestionable as regards the Rafale issue.
This was in stark contrast to the stand taken by N Ram, who continues to peddle the Rafale scam allegations. Not only that, he had actively worked in trying to derail the fighter jet deal by publishing fake news on The Hindu. During the run-up to 2019 general elections, he had published cropped and incomplete pictures of documents in The Hindu to allege government wrongdoing in the Rafale deal.
Both the journalists had also openly fought over an article published by The Hindu criticising the Akshay Patra Foundation. The onion-garlic free meals provided to school students by the foundation was slammed by the publication in a report, saying the children were not finding them delicious.
However, after the article was widely criticised on social media, Malini Parthasarathy distanced herself from it, saying she does not handle day to day news content. She had also added that the attack on Akshay Patra by her own newspaper was ‘unwarranted’.
But N Ram had a different take on the issue, who had slammed Malini for getting swayed by ‘moronic attacks’. He had also added that The Hindu’s “Code of Editorial Values” guarantees guarantees “professionalism in the editorial functioning” freedom from external or internal interference. However, Malini had refused to change her stand on the article, saying that the Akshaya Patra story was an example of shoddy one-sided journalism.
Both the journalists from The Hindu continues to display such carrot and stick approach. While Malini Parthasarathy offers a carrot to the critiques of The Hindu for its biased reporting, N Ram, on the other hand, placates its left-wing supporters.