DNA Comes To Delhi. Finally

It’s actually happening.

WrittenBy:Kaushik Chatterji
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Brace yourselves for a historic Dussehra seven days from now. Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) members will take off their khaki shorts and step into grey trousers. And after half a dozen false alarms, Essel Group’s Daily News & Analysis (DNA) is finally going to hit Delhi’s newsstands.

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But does the national capital’s already overcrowded market need yet another newspaper? That’s exactly what DNA asks — rhetorically, obviously — on the front page of its four-page insert, delivered free to homes across Delhi today. It will start off, we are told, with a 32-page edition, including four pages of business news (‘DNA of Money‘). One of the focus areas will be ‘faunetics’. In case you are wondering like we are, it’s something to do with ‘animals’. So ‘fauna + etics’, like phonetics. Punny.

The meta lead visual shows the promo as a flag, strung from a flagpole that is actually a fountain pen called DNA. Saluting this ‘flag’ are people from various daises. On one, labelled “Reader is the king”, is a Gen Z dude in an “I <3 Delhi” tee. There’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi and several members of his Cabinet. 

On the Congress dais, Sonia Gandhi and Robert Vadra are busy saluting the ‘flag’, while Rahul Gandhi is hurling a paper plane made from National Herald. Priyanka Vadra is turning her back on supporters who are bowing and praying to the Congress dais even as an angry Arvind Kejriwal marches towards it.

Various regional leaders are seen in the background — there’s Uddhav Thackeray holding a rolled-up DNA Mumbai under his arm, and the mahagathbandhan of Nitish Kumar and Lalu Prasad sharing a stage with a placard that says ‘2019’ and, erm, a criminal?

Below the fold are voices from eight “influencers and opinion shapers of Delhi”, including Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu, who recalls DNA’s Mumbai launch. And there’s a column by Mumbaikar-turned-Delhiite Shweta Bachchan Nanda.

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On the inside double spread, we meet the team led by Rohit Gandhi, the editor-in-chief who also heads Essel’s English news channel, WION (World Is One News). Gayatri Jayaraman of #urbanpoor fame is Senior Editor, Opinion page & integrated desks. For some reason, DNA chose to juxtapose five of its exclusive news stories with the claim that it is “B-Town’s go-to paper”.

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It’s only on the back page that the reader is actually told when the paper is going to be launched, in a half-page house ad that screams: “Is junk news ruining your mind?” Clearly, not a reference to Zee News.

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Oh, and there’s a quiz. One of the questions is about the renaming of Aurangzeb Road. One of the options is Lajpat Nagar. That’s not even a road! Let’s just hope more thought goes into the news that DNA will dish out come October 11.


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