Newspaper distribution in Kerala,one of the vibrant markets of vernacular press in the country,has been hit for the past two weeks following an agitation of vendors demanding a hike in commission.
The heat of the agitation is being faced by two leading dailies Malayala Manorama and Mathrubhumi,as the CITU-affiliated Newspaper Agents Co-ordination Committee had exempted a bunch of political mouthpieces and another group of second-rung dailies from the gamut of agitation.
The agents had been on a confrontation with the managements for last few months with the former demanding 50 per cent of the cover price as commission,apart from festival allowances and all other incentives of an employee.
However,the managements rejected the demands,saying the agent-newspaper relation is not an employee-employer affair.
While Malayala Manorama and Mathrubhumi stood together against the demand,medium-scale vernacular players and two English dailies settled the issue by hiking the commission per copy from 26 per cent to 40.