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Monday, December 13, 2010

Journalism in Delhi Heat

Yesterday I finally decided to pay Nu 10 and take the disco pencils from the withered boy who comes to greet any commuter the moment the traffic signal turns red. A couple of days back, on my way to work at the Hindustan Times House, I came across these groups of children, who looked more dedicated and punctual. They have now become a part of my internship at The Mint, a business paper in collaboration with the Wall Street Journal.

On a summer day, I join the office goers in the capital city of Delhi, hiding my face behind sun glasses to protect my flushed face, and ear phones that hooks me to radio fever 104 FM throughout the 30-minute ride from home. As I reach office, I feel like a Bollywood actress (I mean one wearing a see through dress, thanks to the sweat). I get down from the auto and walk across the subway to office.

The very next moment, I find myself standing tiny with almost a dozen of unfamiliar faces, of which only some care to smile. Here, I have learnt to smile less. The moment I enter The MintOffice, I get a homely feeling. Over the past few days here, I have managed to introduce and get introduced to a couple of grilled journalists and beginners.

Unlike, the news room back home, one doesn’t have time to greet their colleague sitting opposite. Here there is no time to sit and gossip. The reporters are good and aggressive; a tactic that I seriously need to learn.

The huge office bay doesn’t allow you to know each and every person here and it’s not until the lunch break till you actually get to see these people lighten up at the office canteen. It always packed but amazingly never runs short of food.

We never saw reporters sitting beside the editor when he is editing his story or not even see a reporter going to say he has filed the story. The office runs on a computer intranet called idos, which smooth the progress for the editorial team. No one needs to meet in person.

While I struggle to make my way through the coordination here, I keep counting the days. I panic if any of the stories I do would appear, I rush to bother the few sources who have become familiar to me. I look at my watch. It’s getting late and I am told, it is unsafe here.

I pack my equipments, take an auto and enter the fleet of vehicles that show no sign of vanishing.

This is new for me, and this is news.

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