The following is the text of the statement issued by leading publications on the Indian Readership Survey (IRS 2013).
We, the leading newspapers of the country, condemn the newly published Indian Readership Survey (IRS 2013) in the strongest possible terms.
The survey is riddled with shocking anomalies, which defy logic and common sense. The survey completely ignores circulation, the very basis of readership, and grossly contradicts audited circulation figures (ABC). While there are hundreds of such anomalies in the report, we are highlighting just a few of them here:
•There are wild swings in overall newspaper readership across States. Every major newspaper in Andhra Pradesh, irrespective of language, has de-grown by 30 to 65%.
•English language readership in Tamil Nadu has decreased by 38%.
•There are similarly wild swings at the city level. Mumbai shows a 20.3% growth in overall English readership, while Delhi (a faster-growing city overall on all macro indices) shows a drop of 19.5%.
•Hitavada, the leading English newspaper of Nagpur with a certified circulation of over 60,000, doesn’t appear to have a single reader now!
•The Hindu Business Line has thrice as many readers in Manipur as in Chennai!!
•While Punjab has lost a whopping one-third of all its readers in just a year since the last IRS, neighbouring Haryana has grown by 17%.
Given these glaring anomalies, we urge our advertisers and media agencies not to rely upon or use the recently published IRS results in any way.
We also strongly ask RSCI and MRUC, the conductors of the Indian Readership Survey, to withdraw the results of IRS Q4 2013 immediately as well as put a stop to all future editions of this survey, as their continued publication will cause irreparable injury to the reputation of established publications like ours.
Issued in the public interest on behalf of the following publishers:
The Hindu Group of Publications, Dainik Jagran, Dainik Bhaskar, Bennett Coleman & Co, India Today, ABP, Lokmat, Outlook, DNA, Sakshi, Amar Ujala, The Tribune, Bartaman, Aaj Samaj, The Statesman, Mid-Day, Nai Dunia and Dinakaran.