27 March 2023 16:46



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It has been a quarter of a century since Manorama Online ingrained itself as the beacon of Keralites across the globe. On the Silver Jubilee of Manorama Online’s gracious presence in the illuminated psyche of the Malayali populace, Kerala’s premier portal is seeking out fresh digital pastures.

After the era of reading the news, and later watching it, Manorama Online, which was launched by tapping the endless possibilities of the Internet, has been taking each step forward by safeguarding the credibility and lofty standards of the ‘Malayala Manorama’ brand.

Along with this, Manorama Online acquired a new identity beyond that of being the online version of the largest circulated vernacular newspaper in India. It was Prince Philip of Britain who lit the lamp in Kochi on October 17, 1997, to signal the start of Manorama Online. The English version began its operations in 1998. On June 20, 2002, K.M. Mathew, the then Chief Editor of Malayala Manorama, dedicated the redesigned Manorama Online to its readers, which factored in space for entertainment, in addition to news. Manorama Online grew into a multi-media platform by synergising the astounding progress in the field of technology. From its initial presence on computers, it extended its reach to mobile phones, tablets, and smartphones. It unveiled a mobile application and took to the readers the idea of “news and entertainment at one’s fingertips”.

Smart before smart phones

It was Manorama Online that utilized the possibilities of the mobile phone to reach readers even before the era of smartphones. Facilities to listen to interviews with prominent persons, cricket scores, astrology, cinema reviews, and to download ring tones were offered through services such as the Interactive Voice Recorder (IVR). Making Manorama Online available on Nokia phones by joining hands with the company, which was the world’s biggest manufacturer of mobile phones then, was a sweeping innovation.

Manorama Online, the first Malayalam news portal to offer podcasting, also launched 'My Manorama' for readers to share news and photographs, and “Manorama Mail” for sending e-mails and chatting online.

Animated videos and games were rolled out for children.The “Learn Malayalam” programme, introduced to help expatriate Keralite children who did not know Malayalam, received wide acceptance. “Manorama Online E-mart” for online shopping and a travel map with details about the key tourist centres and cities of Kerala were the next steps.

The establishment of kiosks in airports for accessing the Malayala Manorama's extensive range of offerings drew wide attention.

Beyond news

Today, Manorama Online has traversed beyond the realms of a news website. It is a celebration of diverse subjects — cinema, music, environment, fasttrack, technology, travel, health, education, astrology, cuisine, housing, children, campus, lifestyle, literature, Karshakasree and investment. The latest trends on each of these topics are offered on a platter. The English version of Manorama Online, which was rebranded as Onmanorama in 2016, has readers across the world.The “Chuttuvattom” page delves into the hyper-local aspects including news from even remote areas of all districts, obituaries and marriages. The ‘Global Malayali’ caters to the expatriate Malayali community, offering all-encompassing news and views about Malayalis living all over the globe including the Gulf, U.S. and Europe. It also serves as a valuable forum for expats to share the news.Manorama Online blazed a new trail in the field of digital media by presenting election results live.Harnessing the potential of infographics also came into play after that.

Manorama Online’s mass appeal widened as video interviews, podcasts and columns by eminent personalities including writers, movie stars and cultural leaders, became a regular affair. The “Reporters’ Corner”, which allowed readers to share news and photographs, became widely accepted. In-depth articles spanning an extensive array of topics make its Premium section the primary hangout of the serious Malayali reader.

The Malayala Manorama daily’s e-paper is for those who insist on reading the news in the form of a newspaper, anywhere in the world. It evokes the feeling of reading the daily newspaper sitting on the verandah back home.

Matrimonial site M4Marry.com, education-career site Manorama Horizon, health services site QKDoc.com and Helloaddress for real estate services are part of the bouquet of Manorama Online’s niche offerings.

Kerala's premier listing platform Quickerala.com is an exhaustive reservoir of businesses and services in the state.

Society’s conscience

As part of its social responsibility, Manorama Online hosts programmes such as the digital summit “Techspectations”, which has reached its fifth edition; “Chuttuvattom award” for honouring outstanding residents’ associations; “Zero Waste” for creating awareness on the garbage disposal; “Swapna Keralam” that collates readers’ aspirations about the future of Kerala; and “Golden Salute” for recognising exemplary services to the society during the pandemic.

The “Campus Short Film Fest” series aimed at spotting young talents, “Cinemayude 100 Varsham” to mark the centenary of Malayalam cinema, the show “Jaya Ragangal” in honour of music composer M. Jayachandran, medical camps, essay writing contests, and Big Business Idea competitions for students also adorn Manorama Online’s extensive outreach programme.

Golden seal of recognition

In the past 25 years, Manorama Online has been awarded several national and international prizes in recognition of its excellence. In 2016, it won the best media website award instituted by the world association of news publishers, WAN-IFRA, by outperforming the websites in even the major languages of the world.

It has won over 30 international awards, including the International News Media Association’s Global Gold Shield in 2020 and 2021, the WAN-IFRA gold shield for South Asian Digital Media in 2019, 2020 and 2021, and the WAN-IFRA bronze shield for outstanding news website/mobile service in 2022. It has won awards for excellence several times for its reportage on the Thiruvananthapuram International Film Festival and State school art festivals.

A silver lining

Manorama Online has traversed the past 25 years without ever blemishing the shining glow of “Dharmosmat Kuladaivatam” or ‘Charity, Our Household Divinity’, which is the motto of the Malayala Manorama Group.

As it strides ahead marking a silver lining in Kerala’s media history, Manorama Online seeks to build on its golden dreams – Kerala’s crowning glory in all spheres and the immaculate primacy of the Malayalam language to its countless readers.

Network 18, India's premier news network, broadcast an exclusive interview featuring Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath.

The one-on-one discussion was held with Rahul Joshi, the Editor-in-Chief, where Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath spoke on various matters of public interest including the 2024 General Elections, the construction of the Ram Mandir, as well as the steps being taken to drive the state’s GDP.

Regarding employment, Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath of Uttar Pradesh stated that over the past six years, the state has provided more than 5 lakh government jobs. He added that UP plans to further offer lakhs of jobs in the coming years. The CM will, on the 10th of February, announce the quantum of investment that the state is likely to receive and also speak about the employment opportunities that are expected to be generated as a consequence.

During the discussion on the Investor Summit, CM Yogi stated that under the guidance of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, the growth rate of UP has doubled in the last 6 years. PM Modi had set a target for the state during the first Investor Summit in 2018. To improve the lives of the 25-crore people in UP and to make India a $5 trillion economy, UP must proactively work towards driving economic progress and development. The state has identified 25 sectors for growth and sent teams to major countries and cities in India to explore opportunities.

In regards to the upcoming assembly elections, the Chief Minister stated that the BJP has performed exceptionally well wherever it is in power. The benefits of government programs have been provided to all sections of society without discrimination. He also expressed confidence that in 2024, the Bharatiya Janata Party will secure more seats than in 2019.

On the topic of infrastructure, CM Yogi stated that UP's existing infrastructure is connected to the National Capital Region (NCR), but the goal is to connect the eastern, Bundelkhand, western and central parts, as well as the airport. In the last six years, the state has made significant progress in its construction projects and strengthened inter-state connections. This has led to the establishment of Waterway No. 1, which connects the state with the eastern port. The express highway network has also been established in recent years, providing the state with the means to advance its economy in a timely manner and reach its targets.

Regarding the construction of the Ram temple, CM Yogi Adityanath stated that the temple's construction is proceeding as planned. He affirmed that the temple will be built on time and Ramlala will take residence in the temple as scheduled. He described it as a moment of pride for the country and the world. The exact date for Ramlala's arrival in the temple will be decided by the temple trust, and all plans will be executed in accordance with the trust's decisions.

On the question of the Uniform Civil Code, CM Yogi Adityanath stated that various state governments have established committees to examine the issue. He mentioned that the Law Commission of Uttar Pradesh is also evaluating the matter. When the recommendations are received, the government will give due consideration. The Chief Minister stated that he will take all relevant factors into account and make a decision accordingly.

Regarding the issue of the boycott culture, CM Yogi Adityanath stated that individuals with exceptional talents such as artists, writers, and others deserve respect, which is what the state strives to provide. He advised film directors to be mindful of the sentiments of the public and avoid including scenes that may cause controversy and harm public feelings. The Chief Minister emphasized that mistakes can happen, but deliberately causing controversy is unacceptable.

BBC is back with its fourth edition of the BBC Indian Sportswoman Of The Year (ISWOTY) Award 2022 to honour the achievements of Indian female players and a new award category introduced to honour the Indian

Para-Sportswoman Of The Year.

The nominees for the BBC Indian Sportswoman Of The Year were announced today at a press conference in New Delhi.

Mirabai Chanu, Weightlifter: The first Indian weightlifter to clinch a silver medal at the Tokyo Olympics, followed by a gold medal at the Birmingham Commonwealth Games in 2022.

Sakshi Malik, Wrestler: The first Indian woman wrestler who won a medal at the Rio Olympics, followed by a gold at the Birmingham Commonwealth Games. She has won a silver and bronze at previous Commonwealth games.

Vinesh Phogat, Wrestler: The first Indian woman to win two World Championship medals in wrestling, also the first to win gold at both Commonwealth and Asian Games. Her latest gold medal was won at the Birmingham Commonwealth Games.

P V Sindhu, Shuttler: The first Indian woman to win two consecutive medals at the Olympics, bronze at the Tokyo Olympics and silver at the Rio Games. She ended 2021 with a silver at the Badminton World Federation World Tour finals.

Nikhat Zareen, Boxer: After winning the Junior World Boxing Championship in 2011, she won a gold medal at the IBA Women’s World Boxing Championships in 2022.

These five nominees have been selected by independent jury members that consists of eminent sports journalists and writers. The voting for the BBC ISWOTY award has kicked off today. Members of the public from across the world can vote for their favourite player on BBC News, BBC Hindi, BBC Gujarati, BBC Marathi, BBC Punjabi, BBC Tamil, BBC Telugu until 20th of February 2330 IST/1800 GMT.

The Head of India, BBC News, Rupa Jha, elaborated on BBC’s initiative of recognising women athletes’ achievements in more categories. “We are delighted to announce that this year we are introducing BBC Indian Para-Sportswoman Of The Year award,” she said. “This is to recognise and celebrate women para-athletes and their terrific journey.” Ekta Bhyan, para-athlete and a gold medallist in 2018 Asian Para Games appreciated the BBC for rewarding para-athletes, and sending a powerful message that people with disabilities have talents and abilities which should be celebrated and recognised. She said, “Such recognition helps in increasing public awareness and
inclusivity of para-sports. I hope this leads to more opportunities for para-athletes to compete and excel, and inspire more people with disabilities to participate in sports.”

At the press conference, Vijender Singh Beniwal, first Indian boxer to win an Olympic medal in 2008 expressed delight that the achievements of Indian female players is being praised and their stories are now reaching people through the BBC’s initiative. He further added: “Our sportswomen have proven their calibre on the grounds time and again. They are the real fighters, it’s not easy to quantify how much respect they truly deserve.”

On the 5th of March 2023, the winner of BBC ISWOTY will be announced at the awards ceremony. The BBC Emerging Player Of The Year award and the BBC Lifetime Achievement Player award will also be named and honoured along with the new category of Indian Para-Sportswoman Of The Year.

Also in February, BBC is working on a joint editorial collaboration with Indian media houses to develop a gender lens while reporting. The content jointly produced under the BBCShe project will be published on BBC News websites and on our collaborators platforms: AgentsOfIshq, BehanBox, Baimanus, FeminismInIndia, GurgaonKiAwaaz, TheBridge, TheNewsMinute and Women’sWeb.

List of eminent jury members of BBC ISWOTY

Adesh Kumar Gupta, Senior Sports Journalist
Amanpreet Singh, Deputy Bureau Chief, Sports, PTI
Andrew Amsan, Principal Correspondent, The Indian Express
Archie Kalyan, Diversity Producer, BBC Sport
C Venkatesh, Independent Journalist
Deepti Patwardhan, Independent Journalist
Giles Goford, Global Development Producer, BBC Sport
Harpal Singh Bedi, Senior Sports Journalist
Hemant Rastogi, News Editor, Amar Ujala
Jonathan Selvaraj, Sportstar, The Hindu
Kamal Varadoor, Editor, Chandrika Daily
Mansi Kapur, Growth Editor, BBC News
Neeru Bhatia, Deputy Chief of Bureau Sports, The Week
Norris Pritam, Senior Sports Journalist
Prashant Keni, Independent
Rajeev Menon, Special Correspondent, Malayalam Manorama
Rajender Sajwan, Senior Sports Journalist
Rakesh Rao, Deputy Editor, The Hindu
Ravdeep Mehta, Founder, India All Sports
Rica Roya, Sports Editor, NDTV
Rupa Jha, Head of India, BBC News
Sambit Mohapatra, Associate Editor, Nirbhay Odia Daily
Saraju Chakravorty, Sports Editor, Syandan Patrika
Sayan Chatterjee, Social Media Head, The Bridge
Sharda Ugra, Senior Sports Journalist
Sivakumar, Senior Sports Journalist, BBC News
Subodh Malla Barua, Chief of Sports News, Dainik Asam
Sujith Kumar, Senior Sports reporter
Susan Ninan, Independent Journalist
Vandna, TV Editor, BBC Indian Languages
Vemparala Venkata Subrahmanyan, Deputy Editor Sports, The Hindu
Vijay Lokapally, Editorial Consultant, Sportstar
Vipul Kashyap, Sports Correspondent, ANI
Viswananthan K, Assistant Editor, Mathrabhumi
Y B Sarangi, Special Correspondent, The Hindu

Sundar Pichai’s AI Generated Avatar Leads into Exclusive Interview Decoding Google’s India Strategy

Business Today’s 31st Anniversary issue cover is set to establish a new trend – it is the first ever Artificial Intelligence (AI) software-generated cover. Google CEO Sundar Pichai in an AI designed Avatar adorns the cover page for the issue featuring an exclusive interview decoding Google’s India Strategy and how AI will soon get as big as the Internet and mobile.

Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman unveiled the special cover and the 31st Anniversary edition of Business Today during the India Today-Business Today Budget Roundtable in Delhi on February 6. Along with the anniversary edition, Ms. Sitharaman also launched BTMag.in, the website's special magazine section.

This edition of Business Today titled ‘Mission 2047: The Road to India@100’ examines India's path to 100 years of independence. Business Today has published a 300+ page special anniversary issue, which contains 125+ pages of adverts, to commemorate its 31st year of publication and market leadership.

One of the biggest editions ever for the magazine, the 31st Anniversary issue of Business Today, has an impressive line-up of an AI generated cover and includes articles that go into great detail about the prospects of a wide range of sectors, such as production, banking and finance, stock markets, energy and power, information technology services, new ventures, micro, small, and medium-sized enterprises, and many more.

Outlining the vision of India’s path to 100 years the issue features in-depth pieces, and guest posts from the titans of Indian business including Ajay Piramal, Punit Renjen, Naina Lal Kidwai, TV Narendran, Pawan Munjal, Anish Shah, Amitabh Chowdhury, Keki Mistry, SN Subrahmanyan, Anjali Bansal, Sandip Patel, Kris Gopalakrishnan, TV Mohandas Pai, Roshni Nadar, Pawan Goenka, Kunal Shah, Deep Kalra, Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw, SS Rajamouli, GR Gopinath, KV Subramanian, Rajeev Chandrasekhar, and Patu Keswani.

BTMag.in, follows the success mantra of Business Today’s leadership with in-depth coverage of business news and insights, one stop destination for news, views, and analysis, one stop destination for in-depth interviews, features, market analysis, and cutting-edge reportage on corporations, economy, sectors, and many more.

On the circulation front, Business Today’s distribution reach has extended to new-age platforms such as Milkbasket, Fresh to Home, Amazon, Flipkart, and also non-conventional outlets for magazine sales such as Spencer’s Retail, Patanjali Mega Mart, milk booths, grocery stores, and super markets. This has not only enabled magazine sales to revive in the post-pandemic world but also accelerated growth in circulation.

Started in January 1992, Business Today has been witness to the economic growth of post-liberalisation India, meticulously chronicling and analysing every big business event that has shaped our economy. We have tracked the path taken by iconic leaders, as well as new-generation scions and new business leaders with passion, verve, and accuracy. Over past three decades, Business Today has become the harbinger to India’s growth story.

A power packed line-up of union ministers including Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman are participating in the India Today- Business Today budget roundtable slated on 6th February 2023.

This round table follows the traditional Budget-day coverage which is an annual high interest event for television channels.

On 1st February, immediately after FM presented the first-of -the-Amritkaal-budget in the parliament, a rapt post budget discussion was presented by trio of Anchors Rahul Kanwal, Udayan Mukherjee and Rajdeep Sardesai. This budget day coverage had a blockbuster launch on the internet with over 143 k average concurrent users on India Today YouTube channel alone. (Source: YouTube Live | All Feeds | Average Concurrent Users | 1st Feb’23 | 11:00-12:30 Hrs)

The round table features Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman who has the distinction of presenting 5 Union budgets in a row and is likely to elucidate on her first-of-the-Amritkaal-budget along with other ministerial colleagues, Secretary’s, analysts and Indian industry doyens.

Senior Union Ministers who will also be taking the mike to speak to the country includes – Nitin Gadkari Minister of Road Transport and highways, Piyush Goyal Minster of Commerce& Industry, Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution and Textiles, Ashwini Vaishnaw, Minister of Railways, Communications, and Electronics and Information Technology will present their views on the discussion The Effective Model for Growth in Times of Global Recession.

BT Editors Sourav Majumdar, Siddharth Zarabi, Udayan Mukherjee, Aabha Bakaya and News Director of India Today and Aaj Tak and the Executive Director of Business Today, Rahul Kanwal will showcase their trademark anchoring styles to deliver a lively and engaging session.

Details of the other sessions:

A conversation on Budget and the ‘Politics of an Election’ will pit dynamic speakers Jayant Sinha, BJP MP and Supriya Shinate, chairperson, Social Media and National Spokesperson, Congress.

Top notch tax consultants will deliberate on ‘Taxation: Hits & Misses’ includes Ved Jain, Senior Tax Adviser, Neeru Ahuja., APAC Tax Head, Deloitte, Sanjay Tolia, Partner, Price Waterhouse Cooper, Vishal Malhotra and TMT Tax Leader, EY India.

While Nitin Gupta, Chairman, Central Board of Direct Taxes will take the audience through ‘The Long & Short of Taxation’, Corporate leaders who will be debating the agenda ‘Push for Industrial Growth’ includes Parvesh Minocha, Chairman, Feedback Infra, Patanjali Keswani, CMD, Lemon Tree Hotels, Navneet Munot, MD & CEO, HDFC Mutual Fund, Kunal Bahl, CEO, Snapdeal, Rahul Garg, Founder & CEO, Moglix, and Prashant Tripathi, MD & CEO, Max Life Insurance.

A discussion with ‘The Budget Makers’ will feature T.Y. Somanathan, Finance Secretary, Sanjay Malhotra, Secretary, Department of Revenue, Ajay Seth, Secretary, Department of Economic Affairs and Tuhin Kanta Pandey, Secretary (Department of Investment and Public Asset Management)


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