afaqs! news bureau

The TOI Group to shut Pune Mirror, relaunch Mumbai Mirror as a weekly

A pandemic fueled economic crisis, an import duty adding to newsprint costs, and a lack of stimulus cited as reasons for this move.

The Times of India Group has announced it will shut the Pune edition of ‘Mirror’ and relaunch Mumbai Mirror as a weekly. Both editions, however, will continue to have a strong digital presence.

It was in May 2005 when the first edition of Mumbai Mirror was published and soon led to the launch of sister siblings in Pune, Ahmedabad, and Bangalore.

Here is the official note:

Fifteen years ago, the ‘city that never sleeps’ had a new and good reason for staying awake – and for waking up, when it did manage to get some sleep: Mumbai Mirror. Feisty and fearless, energetic and enthusiastic, playful yet punchy, it lived up to its name from the day it was born, mirroring Mumbai in all its myriad moods. It was as local as Mumbai’s locals – the lifeblood that keeps the city on track and moving. The paper became such an integral part of the reader’s life, driving the narrative of the city, that it was decided to extend the experience to Bengaluru, Pune and Ahmedabad.

Sadly, just as the pandemic, lockdown and unprecedented economic crisis have laid low many great ideas and initiatives before they could fully take root, they came as a body blow for the still-young brand. Not only has the newspaper industry been among the hardest-hit in terms of revenues, it has been weighed down by an import duty that has added to newsprint costs. With the long-held hope of a stimulus for the newspaper industry as represented by the Indian Newspaper Industry (INS) not materializing and the economy now officially in recession, it is with a heavy heart that the group has decided to cease publication of Mirror in Pune and relaunch Mumbai Mirror as a weekly. They will, however, continue to have a strong digital presence.

The group in a statement said, “Following months of discussions and deliberations, we have made this extremely difficult and painful decision to recalibrate our portfolio of publications. We truly value the contribution of our journalists and other staff towards building such a strong brand in a relatively short time, and thank them for their hard work and great effort.”