Oct 10, 2008

Business - Made in Punjab,printed in the west

The Indian vernacular media is making inroads in Canada, the US, the UK, and Australia, and Chandigarh is playing a prominent role in updating the expatriates about the developments taking place in the country.

More than a dozen NRIs have started their publications in these countries and work is outsourced to Punjab and Chandigarh. The reason is that the cost of outsourcing work from Punjab and Chandigarh is comparatively cheap.

According to a rough estimate, currently there are 40-45 publications run by Punjabi expatriates, being published from Canada, the US, the UK, and Australia, that have local (Punjab, Chandigarh) content, and are outsourcing their layout and matter from Chandigarh and Punjab.

Also, a majority of the publications are weekly and are published in Punjabi, apart from Hindi and English. Also, active working journalists, freelancers and stringers working in this part of the country are contributing to these publications.

Speaking to Business Standard, Khushal Lali, bureau chief of Punjabi publication ‘Parvasi’, said: “A majority of the publications are weekly and tabloid-size, and are published in Hindi. These publication are being circulated free of cost among NRIs.”

Headquartered in Toronto, Parvasi is a 45-page Punjabi newspaper which is published weekly from Vancouver and Calgary and is run by Rajinder Saini, an NRI from Pathankot.

Asked about the reason for outsourcing from Chandigarh, he said: "It is all because of the cost factor, which is almost one-fourth. This means that if a publisher pays Rs 50,000 per month for outsourcing work to India, he will have to shell out nearly Rs 2,00,000 per month here.”

Publications like Parvasi have opened their full-fledged offices in Mohali and have hired journalists for news operations and editing.

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