National Herald to get 2nd birth in poll-bound Karnataka

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Bengaluru, June 6: If reports are to be believed, the pre-Independence era newspaper, The National Herald, founded by India's first Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru back in 1938, is all set to be relaunched in Bengaluru, Karnataka, on June 12.

In 2008, the newspaper, known to be backed by the Congress and the Gandhi family, stopped its publication citing financial constraints. What is interesting is that the Congress has decided to relaunch the newspaper from the southern state which is set to go on polls in 2018.

National Herald

Analysts are saying that the newspaper is likely to act as a mouthpiece for the Congress in Karnataka as the political party hopes to retain power in the state for the second time in a row.

Vice President Hamid Ansari will launch a commemorative edition of The National Herald to mark the 70th year of Independence in India's IT hub on June 12, reported The Economic Times. The event will be attended by Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi and other top leaders of the party.

Afterwards, an official launch of the edition and formal print relaunch of the newspaper will take place in New Delhi on June 20. The Delhi meet will be graced by President Pranab Mukherjee.

"The BJP-led government at the Centre has used the assets owned by The National Herald to harass our party leaders. A court judgement about four months ago said the newspaper can continue to hold the assets provided the print publication is continued.

Beginning with this commemorative edition, the newspaper is now being re-launched," a cabinet minister in the Siddaramaiah government in Karnataka told The Economic Times.

The website of the newspaper--Nationalherald.com--was launched last year under the editorship of Neelabh Misra.

The newspaper has been mired in controversy after BJP MP Subramanian Swamy filed a case against Congress president Sonia Gandhi and Rahul for alleged fraud and land-grabbing through the Associated Journals Limited that holds The National Herald in 2012.

"The NDA has used this case to go after our leaders including filing money laundering cases against them and dragging them to courts. Efforts to relaunch the print edition have been on from nearly two years as several issues had to be sorted," a senior Congress leader said.

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