Thejas, a Malayalam daily owned by the extremist Popular Front of India (PFI), has announced its decision to cease publication from end of this year. The Kozhikode-headquartered broadsheet has six editions in Kerala and close to 250 employees including 200 permanent staff.
The management informed the staff on Monday that the newspaper’s last edition would be published on December 31. However, a magazine by the same name and the digital arm of the newspaper will continue to operate. Intermedia Publications chairman and PFI president Naseruddin Elamaram said the lack of government ads had affected flow of other ads also. “Without advertisements, the publications was running into debts and it has become difficult to continue,” he told ieMalayalam.com.
The newspaper, founded in January 2006, ran into trouble in 2010 when the LDF government headed by V S Achuthanandan and later the UPA government at the Centre denied the newspaper any ads. Both the Union Home Ministry and the state government cited intelligence inputs about the nature of the paper’s coverage and its alleged attempts to create religious discord in the state.
The paper’s management moved the High Court, which ordered an independent committee to analyse the allegations against the paper. The committee concluded that the paper’s articles and editorials have the potential to foment communal trouble in Kerala.
The paper had already shut its international bureaus in Saudi Arabia, Qatar and Bahrain, home to large expatriates from Kerala.