The four pages of the Economic Times, inserted within this morning's Times Of India, was my first view of the new pink coloured paper. I was not particularly impressed, and had I not been told about the pink paper, in line with the great financial dailies of the world, I would have though they had used bad newsprint. In any case, changing the colour of a paper is a mere cosmetic job, it does not enhance the quality of the paper. It is like Air India putting fresh paint on its planes and talking about a new corporate image.
Still, credit must be given to whoever (probably Mr. Samir Jain himself) is responsible for introducing the pink paper and thus once againeffectively pre-empting the Ambanis (father and sons). The Ambanis (father and sons). The Ambanis have not been able to bring out their paper, but talked so much about it that everybody knows what sort of a paper it is going to be if it ever does come out. And they have been freely using up the ideas.
Mr. Ambani's paper, it has been widely reported, is going to be in the lines of the Wall Street Journal, or at least the Asian Wall Street Journal. I have only vague recollections of these two papers, meaning that I have seen them but not actually sat down and read them.
I am more familiar with the Financial Times, London and Frankfurt. One of the papers I used to work for was getting it regularly, and though its financial coverage - meaning 95 per cent of the paper - went over my head and out of the window, it had a well-written entertainment and books section on fixed days of the week, which I read in some detail.
These days, of course, most of the natioanl dailies in the West carry a separate business and finance section, some of them the size of the Economic Times and Financial Express combined, and then some.
The International herald Tribune does not have a separate section, but it has pages of financial news and colums share movements in all the mahor stock-markets of the world. It is a guide for the Americian businessman travelling abroad, the stockmarket figures and baseball scores. Whatever part of the world he may be in, in the morning a Herland Tribune is slipped under his hotel room door.
Meanwhile, coming back to the pink Economic Times, I hope they do not make a habit of inserting it in the regular Times. Once is enough. I would rather they gave the extra four pages to my friend, A.S. Abraham, to write something.