Employees Sue for Dues as Indian Publisher Shuts Down Three Magazines

The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ)

joins partners and affiliates in India in expressing concern at the recent

decision by the Outlook group to shut down three magazines it was publishing as

part of a franchise arrangement with global media concerns.

In a statement released on Friday, Outlook Publishing

(India) Ltd (OPIL), announced that it would be terminating its franchise

agreements in India with People, Geo and Marie Claire, all of which would cease publication after issues in

press were printed and delivered.

 

The IFJ learns that the editorial staff at these

publications had no prior warning of the management decision.

The Outlook decision comes just days after India's

biggest media group, Bennett, Coleman and Co Ltd., publishers of The Times of India, announced that it

would shut down its weekend magazine Crest,

after less than four years of trying to meet the demand for long-form

journalism.

 

Outlook also publishes magazines in the news and

current affairs, business, money and travel segments, all of which have been

reportedly facing financial issues on account of a contraction in advertising

support.

Employees of People magazine have subsequently approached the labour court in Mumbai city and

obtained a stay on the closure decision, pending a full settlement of dues for

all those at risk of retrenchment. It is assumed that the stay will be

applicable to all three magazines, whose employees number over sixty.

The aggrieved employees have argued that companies

often fail to settle dues that are owed, once they shut down operations and lay

off workers.

The IFJ supports all the staff of the three magazines

in their effort to get a fair settlement of all dues owed.

"We extend our solidarity to all partners and

affiliates in India as they seek to cope with a media scenario that is rapidly

turning adverse, on account of a contraction of advertising spending in the

Indian economy", said Jacqueline Park, IFJ Asia-Pacific Director.

For

further information contact IFJ Asia-Pacific on +612 9333 0950
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IFJ represents more than 600,000 journalists in 131 countries
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