Circulation of CPM daily drops drastically

via RamaKrishnan published on March 18, 2007



The Circulation of Deshabhimani, the CPM mouthpiece in Malayalam, is stooping day by day.  The downfall became visible during the intense circulation campaign that took place in last August and September. Thanks to the acute factionalism in the party between the Pinarayi and Achutanandan factions, the drop is snowballing in to a major controversy within the CPM.


As per the latest report published by the Audit Bureau of Circulation, the CPM daily in Malayalam has lost nearly 40000 copies.  The party managers are finding it difficult to explain the unprecedented loss, despite the party in power using all its tactics to enroll subscribers even by threats and intimidation.  In all the major cities and towns across Kerala, the business establishments are approached and if any one refuses to subscribe they are threatened by local Marxist goondas.  Fearing damage to their life and property people were compelled to subscribe. 


Since the CPM coming back to power, Deshabhimani has been siding with the Pinarayi group.  The VS group is planning to dub the issue as an impact on the wrong policies of the present Deshabhimani management led by Pinarayi loyalists E P Jayarajan, V V Dakshinamurthy and P Rajeev and raise it in the party forums.


The Achutanandan group feels that after the ouster of Achutanandan from the editorship, the paper has been trying to sideline him.  Recently Deepika, a newspaper started by the Christian Church, which is now taken over by a controversial businessman close to Pinarayi Vijayan, launched a character assassination campaign against the CM.  Strangely, the party mouthpiece did not write a word against it.  But whenever a small criticism is raised against Pinarayi Vijayan, Deshabhimani writes special reports to protect him.


Deshabhimani’s circulation during July-December 2006 was 2,57,222, while the audited figure for the previous half-year was 2,88,115. Last August and September, the party could add thousands of new subscribers with crude tactics. Party workers launched a door-to-door campaign often pressurizing the people to face severe consequences of they refuse to subscribe.


The ABC report reveals the startling fact that in spite of all out efforts thousands of readers bid good bye to the paper thanks to its credibility. Interestingly the paper suffered heavy losses in all the six editions; Kannur, Kozhikode, Thrissur, Kottayam and Thiruvananthapuram.


It is not an open secret that CPM leaders and workers look to other papers and periodicals to understand and assess truth. The frustration of the official faction is reflected in the allegation of Pinaray Vijayan that a ‘media syndicate’ is active in the State to destroy the CPM, particularly him. When asked about to reveal the details, he could not come out with any substantial information. Obviously Pinarayi is angry that thanks to the independent media prevailing in the country people know the dubious role played by himself and his party in the ADB loan agreement, SNC Lavlin agreement, recovery of catridges from Pinarayi’s bag at the Chennai air port and a host of other misdeeds of the CPM and its government.


The CPM cadres themselves have abandoned the party organ. But the CPM and its fund raising managers would do everything to increase the circulation of Deshabhimani. Keralites have a sigh of relief that how so ever the party comrades try; they cannot hide truth from the people.

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