FOUR JOUR­NAL­ISTS from TEHELKA re­ceived the Na­tional Press Club Awards for Ex­cel­lence in Jour­nal­ism un­der var­i­ous cat­e­gories at a func­tion in Mum­bai on 4 May 2012. The awards were in­sti­tuted in 2001, and carry a cash prize of 75,000 each. Shoma Chaud­hury, Man­ag­ing Ed­i­tor, TEHELKA, was awarded the first prize in the ‘Pol­i­tics’ cat­e­gory for ‘ The In­con­ve­nient Truth of Soni Sori’. This story high­lighted the plight of the 35-year-old tribal woman from Ch­hat­tis­garh who was charged of be­ing a ‘Naxal as­so­ci­ate’ and for par­tic­i­pat­ing in five in­ci­dents of vi­o­lence. She was ar­rested shortly af­ter com­ing to Delhi to tell her story.

Also shar­ing the award with Shoma was Ashish Khetan, In­ves­ti­ga­tions Ed­i­tor, TEHELKA, for the arti- cle ‘ Where did 8,500 crore of UP’S Health Fund Go?’, that gave a 360 de­gree per­spec­tive of the mas­sive Na­tional Ru­ral Health Mis­sion ( NRHM) scam. The story nailed the com­plic­ity of the state ad­min­is­tra­tion and the sys­temic rot.

The re­port ‘ A Storm Fore­told’ by Spe­cial Cor­re­spon­dent Ro­hini Mo­han won her the first run­ner-up prize in the ‘Health & En­vi­ron­ment’ cat­e­gory for high­light­ing the en­dan­gered liveli­hood of fish­er­men and their de­graded en­vi­ron­ment.

For­mer Lit­er­ary Ed­i­tor Gau­rav Jain was awarded the first prize in the ‘Crime & In­ves­ti­ga­tions’ cat­e­gory for his story: ‘ The House We Blew Down’, an in-depth anal­y­sis of the Aarushi Tal­war mur­der case. It was writ­ten at a time when the Tal­wars were for­mally charged with mur­der af­ter the CBI filed a clo­sure re­port, and ques­tioned the pros­e­cu­tion.

(L to R) Ashish Khetan, Gau­rav Jain and Ro­hini Mo­han at the awards func­tion, held at the NSCI, Mum­bai

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