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Corporate Oct 22, 2013

Siddharth Varadarajan quits The Hindu: Here’s a look at the family tree

By Firstbiz Staff

Hours after the hasty exit of Siddharth Varadarajan from The Hindu, N Ravi has been named the new editor-in-chief of The Hindu and Malini Parthasarathy the editor.

Kasturi and Sons Limited, the family that runs the newspaper, also announced that N Ram has become chairman of KSL and publisher of The Hindu and Group publications and N Murali, co-chairman of the company. The decisions were taken by the Board of Directors of the Company at its meeting on Monday.

Arun Anant, who was CEO, has also been removed from his position at Kasturi and Sons Limited. Anant had been inducted into The Hindu group at the same time that Siddharth Varadarajan was elevated to the position of editor-in-chief in 2011 from the position of National Bureau Chief of The Hindu.

Immediately after the resignation of Siddharth Varadarajan as the editor of The Hindu, speculation is rife about who would replace him. It has to be someone from the family; Varadarajan's tweet clarifies as much. It says The Hindu was back to being a family-run and edited newspaper. Here is brief mention of the important members of the Kasturi and Sons family that runs the newspaper. In 2011, there was a family feud over the control of the prestigious property.

N Ram: He was the editor of the newspaper before Varadarajan was made the first professional editor of the paper. As the great grandson of Kasturi Ranga Iyengar, the patriarch of the Kasturi family, he shot to fame when he wrote a series of articles on the Bofors scandal along with Chitra Subramaniam.

N Ram and N Ravi. Wikimedia Commons.

N Ram and N Ravi. Wikimedia Commons.

Ram later fell out with his brothers N. Murali and N. Ravi and cousins Nalini Krishnan, Nirmala Lakshman and Malini Parthasarathy over control of the family-run media empire. Ram and his group, which included seven of the twelve board members of Kasturi and Sons, were successful in taking over control after the case reaches the Supreme Court of India.

They then managed to take The Hindu Group through a brief transitional period in 2011-12 by appointing professional manager and editors to the organisation. This was when Varadarajan was made the editor.

Ram's daughter Vidya Ram also works with The Hindu Group as the European correspondent for their business daily The Hindu Business Line after topping her graduation class at the Columbia School of Journalism.

N Murali: He was the publisher and managing director of The Hindu group before N Ram wrested control from him.

He also fought the court case over ownership of the newspaper which went from the Company Law Board to the Madras High Court to the Supreme Court of India. Murali and his brother N Ravi resigned along with a few other board members after the court case did not end in their favour.

Malini Parthasarathy: Malini Parthasarathy, N Ram's cousin, was the Executive Editor of The Hindu and is currently the Director of The Hindu Centre for Politics and Public Policy. She has been named as The Editor of Hindu.

Malini is the daughter of Srinivasan Parthasarathy, son of Kasturi Srinivasan. She is the great-granddaughter of Kasturi Ranga Iyengar.

She had written an impassioned letter when she resigned from her position voicing her disappointment over the vindictive manner in which qualified successors to N Ram's position were being sidelined under the garb of professionalism.

N Ravi: He was the editor of The Hindu from 1991 to 2003, and was also involved in the family feud over who would succeed N Ram as the editor of The Hindu. Ravi has been made the editor-in-chief of The Hindu.

He was very critical of The Hindu's coverage of the 2G scandal, saying that he had turned the paper into an apology for A Raja. He was also critical of The Hindu's perceived pro-China bias and said that the paper had also categorically shied away from taking a political stance on Sri Lankan Tamil issue.

by Firstbiz Staff

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