“Sadly, just as the pandemic, lockdown and unprecedented economic crisis have laid low many great ideas and initiatives before they could fully take root, they came as a body blow for the still-young brand,” Times Group said
MUMBAI, Dec 5 (BNC Network) - Reflecting the impact of the pandemic, the Times group announced the closure of its tabloid Pune Mirror and weekly avatar of Mumbai Mirror.
The journalists, many of whom are set to lose jobs, were informed of the shocking development through a video conference.
Responding to comments, Mirror editor Meenal Baghel tweeted: Thank you everyone for your messages. But a very special thank you to the entire team @MumbaiMirror and all the former colleagues who built the newspaper up from scratch. It has been such a privilege to head this newsroom.
The expression ‘former colleagues’ obviously indicated the loss of jobs.
The media world reacted with shock and dismay. “If The Times group with deep pockets cannot withstand the pandemic impact, what could be said about other media houses,” said a veteran journalist in his facebook post.
Latha Venkatesh of CNBC News18 said: Feels like someone banned my morning coffee; feels like a part of Mumbai is gone. Hope digital
@MumbaiMirror goes from strength to strength.
Veteran film journalist Khalid Mohamed: Meenal it was the best n the only paper to look forward to on waking up. Don’t care for the main toi even as an ex employee... a sad day indeed.
Journalist Dev Chatterjee said: Best newspaper in town. It's unbelievable that they are making it weekly. Not a good decision.
The Times Group statement said:
“Fifteen years ago, the ‘city that never sleeps’ had a new and good reason for staying awake – and for waking up, when it did manage to get some sleep: Mumbai Mirror. Feisty and fearless, energetic and enthusiastic, playful yet punchy, it lived up to its name from the day it was born, mirroring Mumbai in all its myriad moods. It was as local as Mumbai’s locals – the lifeblood that keeps the city on track and moving. The paper became such an integral part of the reader’s life, driving the narrative of the city, that it was decided to extend the experience to Bengaluru, Pune and Ahmedabad.
“Sadly, just as the pandemic, lockdown and unprecedented economic crisis have laid low many great ideas and initiatives before they could fully take root, they came as a body blow for the still-young brand. Not only has the newspaper industry been among the hardest-hit in terms of revenues, it has been weighed down by an import duty that has added to newsprint costs. With the long-held hope of a stimulus not materializing and the Indian economy now officially in recession, it is with a heavy heart that the group has decided to cease publication of Mirror in Pune and re-launch Mumbai Mirror as a weekly. They will, however, continue to have a strong digital presence.”
The group said, “Following months of discussions and deliberations, we have made this extremely difficult and painful decision to recalibrate our portfolio of publications. We truly value the contribution of our journalists and other staff towards building such a strong brand in a relatively short time, and thank them for their hard work and great effort.”