IRS 2011 Q1: While six languages register growth in AIR, six others record losses

By Sumantha Rathore , afaqs!, New Delhi | In Media Publishing | June 21, 2011
Gujarati, Hindi, English, Tamil, Punjabi and Kannada dailies have emerged as the gainers in the latest quarter, while Bengali, Telugu, Assamese, Malayalam, Marathi and Oriya dailies are the losers as per average issue readership.

Gujarati language dailies have registered the maximum growth according to the latest quarter of the Indian Readership Survey (IRS 2011 Q1). Any Gujarati Daily, which had registered the maximum loss in readership in the last quarter, has gained the most this time, as per AIR (average issue readership).

Any Gujarati Daily had lost AIR of 2.67 lakh in IRS 2010 Q4. However, this time, the language has gained 1.89 lakh readers. In fact, Gujarati dailies have gained 3.98 lakh in AIR since Q1, 2010. The AIR of Any Gujarati Daily stands at 1.12 crore in the latest quarter.

The top two Gujarati dailies -- Gujarat Samachar and DivyaBhaskar -- have registered gains of 99,000 and 35,000 in AIR, respectively, this time. The third biggest daily, Sandesh, has lost 71,000 readers in the latest quarter. In the last quarter (IRS 2010 Q4), the top three Gujarati dailies -- Gujarat Samachar, DivyaBhaskar and Sandesh -- had recorded losses of 72,000; 74,000 and 60,000 in average issue readership.

Any Hindi Daily is at No. 1 as per AIR and the biggest gainer since IRS 2010 Q1. Any Hindi Daily has AIR of 6.29 crore in Q1, 2011, registering a gain of 41.66 lakh readers since Q1, 2010, and 1.70 lakh in this quarter. While the No. 1 Hindi language daily, DainikJagran, has lost 1.56 lakh this time, the other top Hindi dailies -- DainikBhaskar, Hindustan and Amar Ujala -- have all recorded gains of 24,000, 3.58 lakh and 1.07 lakh (in that order) in AIR in the latest quarter.

English dailies are the third biggest gainer category. According to IRS 2011 Q1, Any English Daily, with an AIR of 1.75 crore, has gained 84,000 readers this time and 6.11 lakh in the last one year. While the top two English language dailies (as per AIR ), The Times of India and Hindustan Times, have registered a growth of 1.88 lakh and 1.75 lakh, respectively, since Q1, 2010, the third player, The Hindu, has lost marginally by 10,000 in the latest quarter of IRS.

Any Tamil Daily has lost 7.04 lakh readers since Q1, 2010, but is the fourth biggest gainer among all the languages this time. The Tamil language dailies, with AIR of 1.23 crore, have gained readers in this quarter (a gain of 58,000 in AIR). The top three Tamil dailies -- Daily Thanthi, Dinakaran and Dinamalar -- have added AIR of 1.73 lakh, 1.46 lakh and 26,000, respectively in Q1, 2011. But, Daily Thanthi and Dinamalar are yet to compensate for the losses they faced in Q4, 2010.

While Daily Thanthi lost marginally in Q4, 2010 -- a loss of 58,000 AIR, Dinamalar lost 1.11 lakh AIR during the same period. Dinakaran has added 2.62 lakh readers in the last one year.

Any Punjabi Daily and Any Kannada Daily have both recorded marginal gains in AIR at 41,000 and 30,000 readers, respectively. While Any Kannada Daily has added AIR of 13.74 lakh since Q1, 2010, Any Punjabi Daily has lost 50,000 readers during the same period.

Vijay Karnataka, Prajavani and Kannada Prabha continue to hold the top three positions among Kannada dailies, with AIRs of 34.70 lakh, 34.03 lakh and 13.34 lakh, respectively. As far as Punjabi newspapers are concerned, the top three spots are taken up by Ajit, Jagbani and Punjabi Tribune, in that order.

The biggest loser as per AIR is Any Bengali Daily -- a loss of 2.43 lakh with AIR of 99.22 lakh in this quarter. The language has lost 5.57 lakh average issue readership since Q1, 2010. All the top three Bengali dailies -- AnandabazarPatrika (ABP), Bartaman and Sangbad Pratidin -- have lost readers. While ABP and Sangbad Pratidin have lost marginally (54,000 and 4,000 respectively), Bartaman has lost the maximum among the three -- a loss of around a lakh in AIR.

Any Telugu Daily is the second biggest loser, followed by Any Assamese Daily. While Any Telugu Daily, with AIR of 1.16 crore, has lost 2.08 lakh readers this time, Any Assamese Daily has lost 1.85 lakh readers.

Eenadu and Andhra Jyothi have recorded losses of 50,000 and 84,000 readers, respectively. Sakshi is the only Telugu daily to have grown -- a gain of 88,000 in AIR this time. Similarly, all the top three Assamese dailies -- AsomiyaPratidin, AsomiyaKhabar and DainikAgradoot -- have lost marginal readerships.

Any Malayalam Daily, with AIR of 1.88 crore, has lost 1.06 lakh readers this time. MalayalaManorama is the No. 1 Malayalam daily with AIR of 99.38 lakh, followed by Mathrubhumi with AIR of 68 lakh and Deshabhimani with AIR of 21.80 lakh in this quarter. However, Any Malayalam Daily has gained 11 lakh readers since Q1, 2010.

Any Marathi Daily, with AIR of 1.88 crore, is the second biggest language category, but has lost marginally this time (a loss of 83,000 in AIR). However, despite losing AIR, the language is still on a growth spree and has gained 2.78 lakh since Q1, 2010. Lokmat has the maximum readership (75 lakh), followed by Sakal (46 lakh) and Pudhari (26.5 lakh) in this quarter of IRS.

Any Oriya Daily, with AIR of 35.64 lakh, has lost marginally (a loss of 67,000 readers). Sambad, Dharitri and Samaj are the top three Oriya dailies with AIRs of 15.81 lakh, 14.42 lakh and 14.10 lakh, respectively.

(Total readership includes any reader who has read any of the last six issues; whereas average issue readership includes only readers who have read the last issue.)

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