Biswajeet Banerjee | Jan 21st 2017, 03.18 PM
Navendu Sharma | Jan 21st 2017, 02.28 PM
PTI | Jan 21st 2017, 01.18 PM
Sebastian PT | Jan 21st 2017, 10.46 AM
NH National Bureau | Jan 21st 2017, 09.46 AM
In 1936, dampened by certain reactionary tendencies in the
National Movement and the Congress Party, Pandit Jawaharlal
Nehru is persuaded to launch an enlightened newspaper.
Nehru launches the daily National Herald in Lucknow with himself
as Editor and Chairman on September 9, 1938 amidst rumbles of
the upcoming Second World War. He was soon followed by
Kotamaraju Rama Rao as Editor.
The masthead of the newspaper carried since 1939 a line beneath
the title in Nehru’s hand – Freedom is in peril, defend it with all
Nehru’s ‘freedom is in peril’ line on the masthead was borrowed
from a cartoon drawn by Gabriel of Brentford, Middlesex, England.
In November 1939, Nehru had sent Indira Gandhi two cartoons by
Shankar and in return she had sent him Gabriel’s cartoon.
Gabriel’s cartoon was part of a British propaganda poster during
World War II. ‘Freedom in peril’ signified European freedom
threatened by the Nazis. Nehru’s line evoked both the Nazi threat
as well as the imperialist disdain for India’s freedom, since India
was being dragged against its will into war by the British.
Forced by British displeasure, National Herald shut down for three
years on August 15, 1942 with an editorial titled ‘Bande Mataram’.
Its Editor Rama Rao was jailed for writing a piece titled ‘Jail or
Jungle’ on the mistreatment of Satyagrahis in jail.
National Herald resumed publication again on November 11, 1945
with an editorial titled ‘Jai Hind’ that Nehru himself wrote.
M Chalapathi Rau became Editor of National Herald to serve a long
innings till 1978. Nehru gave him full editorial independence. Only
twice did Nehru suggest topics for editorials – once asking Britain
to open diplomatic relations with the Soviet Union and next, to
implore Pakistan to release Frontier Gandhi Khan Abdul Ghaffar
Nehru relinquished Chairmanship of Associated Journals that
brought out National Herald on grounds of propriety when he
joined the Interim Government as Prime Minister in 1946. Feroze
Gandhi succeeded him as Chairman and also became its Managing
Director. He served till 1950.
Apart from a brief editorship, Nehru also served as the
newspaper’s International Correspondent and at times local
reporter. He frequently wrote unsigned editorials and reports and
signed articles for National Herald. Once he wrote the report on his
own speech at Barabanki. That was the Puck in him, writes
National Herald brought out a memorable Independence Day
edition on August 15, 1947, its cover adorned with the tricolour,
India's lion capital state emblem and Rabindranath Tagore's
immortal poem, ‘Where the mind is without fear’.
The paper began its Delhi Edition in 1968 from Herald House on
Bahadur Shah Zafar Marg.
Welcome to the Beta version of National Herald.