Loksatta was uniquely successful from its inception 58 years ago, as it was one of the first Marathi dailies in the format of an English newspaper. It went from strength to strength because of the quality of its news and editorial content.
Today, it has editions from Mumbai, Pune, Nagpur, and Ahmednagar and is the only Marathi daily with a wide variety of weekly and weekend supplements.
Known for its impartial coverage and nonconformist and liberal viewpoint, Loksatta is both a forum and the voice of democracy. Loksatta believes in creating thought leaders, change leaders and empowering its readers through knowledge, information and thus stands for leadership through empowerment.
In pursuit of this vision, it has covered stories such as the Reliance-Pramod Mahajan nexus, the Kavita Gadgil issue and Mig 21s being dangerous for our IAF officers. It has also taken up the issue of the ban against plastics and given detailed information and analysis on the Mithi river issue and the Maharashtra Employment Guarantee Scheme.
Recently, the newspaper embarked on a series of initiatives to capture the minds and hearts of young Maharashtrians. The launch of Viva, a woman’s supplement, and contests such as Scratch2Win were part of this successful effort. In addition, other initiatives such as Gatha, a series for children, and Yashaswi Bhawa, a series for students, proved to be extremely popular.
More such initiatives are on the cards as Loksatta constantly seeks to innovate and reinvent, with its finger on the pulse of Maharashtra.
Website : www.loksatta.com
Important editorial initiatives between April 2005 till date
Mumbai Prior to flood: Loksatta -
Mumbai Vruttant (city supplement) was the only paper which predicted on May16, 2005 that Mumbai rain/ flood disaster was inevitable. Inspite of our complete analysis on the topic the authorities neglected the issue and the negligence resulted in the 26/7 disaster last year.
Farmers Suicides covered extensively -
Because of the stories that loksatta covered on the topic the government and the entire media started focusing on this issue. Since the past 1.5 years thousands of farmers have committed suicide. The primary reasons being agricultural loan repayment, very high dependence on monsoon for agriculture & the resulting frustration. Loksatta covered farmers exploitation by Cooperative banks-this resulted in loans being waived off & excess money taken as interest by banks paid back to farmers
Loksatta exposed -
Maharashtra education ministry on weakness in policy related to examination/curriculum for school children, which forced them to change it. The curriculum was supposed to change to a format where students would have to take around 10-15 tests in a year, this would put a lot of pressure on students hence Loksatta raised this issue and the ministry was forced to rethink its decision of implementing the change in curriculum.
Nasik Land Scam -
According to land law agricultural land cannot be sold to anyone other than farmers. However it can be given on lease to industries for short period. Acres of land, in the Dhindori tehsil were given on lease to various companies, these companies in turn illegally sold the land. In another issue government owned land meant for use by government officials was illegally sold. We exposed the scam and our senior journalist Mr. Jai Prakash won the CEOs award for the same.
Aids National Campaign -
AIDS awareness program for which Shekhar Deshmukh was awarded with CEO’s Award. The stories highlighted public attitude towards AIDS…This resulted in various stakeholders starting campaigns to bring attitudinal change towards this aspect of AIDS. Also Shekhar Deshmukh was awarded fellowship to study this topic further from Kaiser Foundation. He is also invited to attend World Aids Conference in Toronto.
Series on weather forecasting -
Mr Abhijit Ghorpade’ s focus is to educate readers on weather. This is about the sudden climatic changes. He too received the CEO’s award for this.
Covered the road condition in Mumbai & Pune during rains -
Mumbai high court reffered to the loksatta story while giving a verdict on the issue.
Admission crises -
Admissions to lots of courses are conducted through Common Entrance tests (CETs), Loksatta covered the loopholes in the whole process; the reservation issue and how this reservation policy is used by various colleges to have community based reservations
Loksatta believes in creating thought leaders, change leaders and empowering its readers through knowledge, information and thus stands for “Leadership through Empowerment”
Events organized – Loksatta
1 April - 30 April 2006 – Vastupravesh by Sanjay Patil
Vastupravesh is a book written by Mr. Sanjay Patil on Vastu Shastra & the importance of entrance/ pravesh in Vastu Shastra. The book was promoted through Loksatta was sold out within 2 weeks of its release
The year-long initiative for Class X students published in Loksatta, Monday -Saturday has ensured the dedicated readership of students for Loksatta. Yashashvi Bhava is a forum where the Class X evaluators educate students through loksatta on various subjects & on what kind of answers are expected out of students in exams.
Gatha Yashachi 2005 & Gatha Dnyanachi 2006
A scrapbook competition with exciting prizes. It consists informative strips daily published in Loksatta for 90 days. The students have to cut & read the strip and paste it in the scrapbook for the same period. The Gatha series year after year aims at empowering children through knowledge on various subjects. The theme taken in 2005 was Famous personalities where information was given about 90 personalities for 90 days.
Gatha Dnyananchi 2006 started on July 24, 2006 & is currently being published in Loksatta everyday. The theme for this year’s series is Information Communication Technology.
20 April, 2006 & 29April, 2006-Anuroopvivaha – Held in Thane & Dadar
Organised in association with Anuroop Vivaha Santha
Ms.Gauri Pednekar spoke about Patrika Vivaha. The topics discussed were Matching of horoscope before marriage, its relevance and the advantages & disadvantages of this tradition.
26th & 27th May 2006-Career Vision-Dadar
15th –17th June 2006-Career Vision –Thane
This was a Career Exhibition where various educational institutions had participated and had put up stalls. There were seminars on various subjects on all days. Approximately 12000 visited the stalls and attended seminars.
17 June 2006 – Author –Reader Meet
29 July 2006 - Author –Reader Meet
A meet/discussion between author & readers, the first Meet was with Dr. Alka Mandke author of Hrudayast. The second meet was with Mr Achyut Godbole author of ‘Sanganak Yug’. This is a forum where the author and readers get to interact and share their views on the book
28 & 29 July 2006-Lokutsav 2006-Nasik
In July Loksatta, Nasik Vrutant completed 2 years. Lokutsav 06 was second year anniversary bash in Nasik’s Parshuram Sai Khedkar Hall. Lokutsav was a 2-day celebration where Folk dances like Lavni were organized
A Fashion Show was also organized. The show was a huge success with over 1200 invitees attending the cultural programs.
Loksatta Deepotsav 2005
A series of interesting workshops on mithai to rangoli making etc, a Marathi film festival for Diwali.