Sakshi in crisis, hikes cost

Sakshi faces funds crunch

Jagan has started feeling the heat of the ongoing CBI and other inquiries into his assets. His Sakshi daily newspaper has been forced to increase its price per copy from Rs 2.50 to Rs 3 effective immediately to tide over the imminent financial crisis.

In a signed message in Sakshi paper today, YSR Congress chief Y S Jagan Mohan Reddy made this announcement.

It may be recalled the Sakshi had earlier launched a price war on its launch. It ran a campaign against Eenadu and Andhra Jyothy which were selling their papers at Rs 3 a copy. Sakshi, which hit the market on March 24, 2008 with a bang boasting the latest technology and impressive resources, dared the competitors to sell their papers at Rs 2 a copy at which Sakshi was available.

That was the time when Y S Rajasekhara Reddy was the Chief Minister who was keen that the media scene in the state should be entirely dominated by this new baby. He also wanted to teach a lesson to ‘recalcitrant’ papers already in existence.

Within two years, Sakshi was forced to eat its own words when it revised the price upwards by 50 paise to make it Rs 2.50 per copy to meet the burgeoning costs. The present hike is the second revision.

Explaining the circumstances leading to the price hike, Jagan said that Sakshi‘s popularity has grown by leaps and bounds in the last nearly four years of its publication. With an impressive 14.5 lakh circulation, the paper is presently the ninth largest circulated daily in the country, he claimed.

“But because of the conspiracy by ‘yellow syndicate’ led by rival Eenadu, and the political plots hatched by opponents, Sakshi is going through financial problems. Investors have been scared away by the innumerable cases filed against us. Since any paper takes at least five years before it could break even, we have been forced to increase the cost,” Jagan said.

The YSR Congress Party leader also said that as much as Rs 25 crore was paid recently to Income Tax Department, which was issuing  ‘unreasonable’ demand notices to the paper.

It is interesting to note that Jagan blames mostly Eenadu and the political vendetta unleashed by rivals as the reason for the decision to increase the price.