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Kathir News: This News Portal Is Changing The Tamil Media Scene
The media platform provides objective and fact based analysis of current events with a strong opinion rather than resorting to narratives that stirs up emotions.
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Social media opened up avenues for several digital media outlets to come out with content in several forms. Some are in the form of articles, some are videos, some are content with good research while some are just fake news. In a space that is already crowded with different people doing different things, it is difficult to establish oneself as a leading player with quality content. But, Kathir News has managed to do that.
Kathir News is a Tamil digital news platform founded in the year 2018 that brings out news and opinions on issues primarily concerning Tamil Nadu, along with regional and other national issues. The media platform provides objective and fact based analysis of current events with a strong opinion rather than resorting to narratives that stirs up emotions. Not just that they also have busted several fake news peddled by mainstream and social media.
Recently as rains lashed Chennai in November 2020, a video was doing the rounds on social media about a building getting submerged in the Adyar River near the Kasi Theater in Ashok Nagar, Chennai. However, it turned out to be a video taken during 2015 floods.
Earlier the DMK chief MK Stalin had peddled that Tamil was left out of the classical language awards. In May of this year, it was peddled again by several media houses. However, that too turned out to be fake news. In another instance, Kathir News busted the fake news put out by One India Tamil on Centre’s debt waiver issue following which the latter had publicly apologized for spreading news contrary to facts. Kalaignar Seithigal, the mouthpiece of DMK had put out fake news based on fake news report peddled by the media in Pakistan. This too was called out by Kathir News.
Another time, Nirmala Sitharaman who was then a Defence Minister had called the army as her ‘parivaar’ (family) but mainstream media in Tamil Nadu twisted it as referring to Sangh Parivar (RSS and BJP) which was busted by Kathir News.
Even in the case of (Tamil movie super star) Rajinikanth, the MSM found fault with his question, ‘which seven people you are talking about’ as he was totally unaware of the development with regard to the convicts sentenced in Rajiv Gandhi assassination case. The media put out reports saying he doesn’t know anything about the seven people though he has good relations with their advocate.
These are just to name a few and the portal has busted even more.
Founder of Kathir News, Mr. SG Suryah said “The media space in Tamil Nadu has the domination of a particular ideology and a political party which we have managed to change”
“For long, people used to believe whatever was aired in these party-run channels but now things have changed” Suryah noted further.
“Digital news media has changed all that. We are now an established Tamil media news outlet with an exclusive set of audience” Pradeep Gunasekaran, Co-Founder of Kathir News said.
It is to be noted that the year 2014-15 saw the spurt of digital news publishers. It was during this time that English portals like Quint, Swarajya, The News Minute, The Wire, OpIndia came up in English.
“Kathir News is a first of its kind in Tamil Media scene. Though we were a little late to the party, we have managed to identify and capture a market” Pradeep Gunasekaran said.
Speaking about the impact they have had, SG Suryah says that mainstream media and social media pages in Tamil Nadu resort to spreading pessimism and unwarranted lies. “Kathir attempts to tell the people about the good efforts of the central government like the MUDRA loan scheme for small traders, the Sukanya Samridhi Scheme for women and then, the PM’s housing scheme”, says Suryah.
But the path to victory hasn’t been easy. “We have had several instances where our site was attacked by bots and our Twitter handles blocked because of our heavy criticism of the Dravidian outfits especially the DMK”, Pradeep said.
Recently, the DMK IT Cell head P Thiaga Rajan had listed out several media outlets critical of the party and discredit them as ‘fake news websites’ of which Kathir News was also one.
Suryah and Pradeep unfettered by it say that it turned out to be a free publicity for them.
“It is not that we are not open to criticisms. We want people to critique our work. We look forward for constructive criticism that will help us improve what we are doing. We do not pay attention to trolls” Suryah said.