Skip to main content

In 2012 Gujarat government "asked" Essar to pay for advertisement praising Modi

MJ Akbar
By Our Representative
In a major revelation, "The Caravan", a journal devoted to politics and culture, has said that Narendra Modi as chief minister of Gujarat had asked in 2012 the top business house Essar to pay for an advertisement-cum-writeup to a Noida-based weekly on Gujarat's development under him. It is quite another thing that the business house politely turned down Modi's plea.
Based on internal emails of Essar, which is a major Indian player in infrastructure and and energy, the journal reveals that the advertisement was to be accompanied by a special supplement. It was meant for "Sunday Guardian", founded by journalist-turned-politician MJ Akbar, currently one of the BJP spokespersons.
The journal suggests, while publishing special supplements on a given topic "as special vehicles for more targeted advertising" on range of topics on industries, events, or specific topics, to those on government bodies is not new, this time a business house was officially asked by a Modi official to do the job.
"The newspaper had approached Essar and offered the company advertising space in the supplement. Interestingly, in its communication with potential advertisers, the newspaper also sent out a letter from the Gujarat information and broadcast department that reiterated the support of the state government to the supplement", the journal said.
The letter, reportedly signed by the principal secretary in the information and broadcasting department, stated, “Here we see an opportunity for our industries, government, corporate, private sector and business houses to be part of this special supplement in promoting our achievements and conveying the message of Gujarat to the readers of this newspaper.”
"The special issue was to coincide with the Pravasi Bharatiya Divas on January 8, 2012", the journal says, adding, "Its copies, according to the email exchange, were to be distributed at the BM Birla Auditorium in Jaipur, where an event was being hosted to commemorate the occasion."
The letter is quoted as saying that the supplement would "designate” Modi as the “economic reformer of India, in the mould of the famous architect of economic reform of China, Paramount Leader ‘Deng Xiaoping’.”
The newspaper’s chief operating officer, Kamal Shah, reportedly also wrote to Essar in the supporting letter: “We will also be highlighting that Chief Minister; Mr. Narendra Modi will one day transform India into an economic superpower.” MJ Akbar wrote a separate letter to Shashi Ruia, the chairman and co-founder of the Essar Group, asking for advertisement.
However, Essar “politely declined” to release an advertisement.

Comments

TRENDING

Mallika Sarabhai releases speech she was 'not allowed' to give at NID Convocation on Feb 7

Counterview Desk
The National Institute of Design (NID) in Ahmedabad, a Ministry of Commerce and Industry body, landed itself in controversy following its decision to put off its 40th convocation ceremony, where noted danseuse Mallika Sarabhai was invited as chief guest. The ceremony was scheduled to be held on February 7.

Modi, Shah 'forget': Gandhi’s first Satyagraha was against citizenship law of South Africa

By Nachiketa Desai*
Hindu fanatic Nathuram Godse assassinated Mahatma Gandhi once on January 30, 1948 but his followers raising the war cry of ‘Jai Sriram’ are killing the Mahatma every day. In his home state of Gujarat, Gandhiji was killed a thousand times in 2002 when over 2,000 Muslims were butchered, their women raped, homes and shops plundered and set on fire and even unborn babies ripped out of the wombs of their mothers.

As corona virus 'travels' to rural areas, NGO begins training tribals, marginalised women

By Souparno Chatterjee*
The World Health Organization (WHO) has declared corona virus a pandemic. Originating from Wuhan in China, it has traversed the entire globe, almost, and claimed more than 16,000 lives already. That’s largely the urban population. In India, despite all the preparedness and war-like promptness to safeguard against the pandemic, several lives have been lost , and hundreds of individuals have tested positive.

Rani Laxmi Bai, Tatya Tope 'martyred' by East India Company, Scindia's forefathers

By Our Representative
In an email alert to Counterview, well-known political scientist Shamsul Islam has said that was “shameful for any political party in democratic India to keep children of Sindhias in their flock” given their role during the First War of Indian Independence (1857). In a direct commentary on Madhya Pradesh Congress leader Jyotiraditya Scindia moving over to BJP, Prof Islam has quote from a British gazetteer to prove his point.

COVID-19: Dalit rights bodies regret, no relief plan yet for SCs, STs, marginalized

By Our Representative
In a letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, the National Dalit Watch-National Campaign on Dalit Human Rights, endorsed* by several other Dalit rights organizations, have insisted, the Government of India should particular care of the scheduled castes and tribes, trans folks, persons with disabilities and the women and children from these communities, while fighting against COVID-19 pandemic.

Big 'danger' of NPR: A babu can tag anyone as doubtful citizen, Jharkhand meet told

' By Our Representative
People in large numbers from across Jharkhand gathered at the Raj Bhawan in Ranchi to demand that the Hemant Soren government reject National Population Register (NPR) and stop all NPR-related activities. The people’s organisations which participated in the dharna under the banner of the Jharkhand Janadhikar Mahasabha (JMM) resolved to intensify their struggle, insisting, NPR is not a Hindu-Muslim issue but is essentially anti-poor.

Gujarat govt plan to 'banish' Gandhian activist anti-democratic, unconstitutional

By Rohit Prajapati*
The current Central and Gujarat governments, and their bureaucracy, have been and are still unable to answer and address the concerns raised, with facts, figures, and constitutional provisions, regarding the terror of tourism in the name of the Statue of Unity and tourism projects surrounding it.

Coronavirus scare ‘pushing’ people from Northeast India into more hardship

By Rishiraj Sinha, Biswanath Sinha*
“No one is born hating another person because of the colour of his skin, or his background or his religion. People learn to hate, and if they can learn to hate, they can be taught to love, for love comes more naturally to the human heart than its opposite.” – Nelson Mandela
***

Haridwar Swamis lead Khudai Khidmatgar peace march in Delhi 'riot affected' areas

By Our Representative
A Khudai Kidmatgar team, which visited the riot-affected regions along with Swami Shivanand Saraswati and Swami Punyanand, has insisted that India's true heritage is the lesson of ‘vasudhaiv kutumbakam', and it is the responsibility of all to carry froward this legacy. Originally founded by Khan Abdul Ghaffar Khan in 1930, also known as Frontier Gandhi, Khudai Khidmatgar is claimed to have been revived by young Gandhian activist Faisal Khan in 2011.