Rotary Club of Vijayawada Mid-Town on Sunday, felicitated editor of Telugu weekly Swathi, Mr. Vemuri Balaram, with ‘Vocational Excellence’ award.
Chairman and managing director of Vijaya Agro Oils Mallineni Rajaiah, who was the chief guest of the function, said that it was not possible to separate Swathi from the Telugus, as the weekly occupied a special place in their hearts.
“One must appreciate the writing skills and marketing strategies of Mr. Balaram, who launched his magazines Swathi monthly and weekly at a time when magazines from reputed media houses were ruling the roost. Very soon, he made his magazines number one in the market,” he said.
President of the club T. Trinadha Raju said that Swathi became a household name in every Telugu family only because of the hard work and dedication of Mr. Balaram. Secretary of the club M. Satish Babu, while introducing Mr. Balaram to the audience, said that Swathi weekly was enjoying a huge readership and has become the number one magazine in Telugu. “Mr. Balaram visited many countries along with Prime Ministers and Presidents on behalf of Swathi. He covered many historic events, including the Lahore bus trip of the then Prime Minister A.B. Vajapayee,” he said.
In his response to the felicitations, Mr. Balaram wondered why the local cultural organisations were not recognising talented Telugu personalities around, but were felicitating people outside the State. “I am receiving this felicitation on behalf of all the readers of Swathi,” he said.
Recollecting the early days of his career, Mr. Balaram said that he never dreamt of anything, but worked hard to achieve success. “The electronic media is not at all a competition for the print media. In fact, many television channels are going by the articles being published in Swathi and launching special programmes for women and children,” he said. He said that even if the channels broke the news, people would believe it only after reading it in newspapers. “That is the power of the print media,” he said.