Vinod K Jose, a renowned senior journalist and Executive Editor of The Caravan, a prestigious investigative-narrative magazine in India, tendered his resignation earlier this week. In a Facebook post, Jose announced his decision to step down from journalism after nearly 15 years of muckraking and long-form reporting. The veteran journalist shared his views on the lack of diversity in Indian newsrooms and his future plans in a recent interview with The Mooknayak.
Jose spoke candidly about the lack of diversity in Indian newsrooms and how it has been a concern for him since he first moved to Delhi. He revealed that close to 90% of journalism jobs in India are occupied by the top castes, representing only 12-15% of the population. This lack of representation for the majority of the population was a major issue in the US in the mid-twentieth century, but the editors’ body took steps to address it by committing to diversity in hiring.
He said, "When Delhi Press offered me the job to lead the Caravan editorial, I had brought it up with Anant Nath and he was quite supportive of addressing the diversity issue. That helped me to increase the diversity quotient in Caravan". The first diversity hiring started in 2011, and since then this was always a component for all Caravan editors to keep in mind when they hire their new colleagues. Caravan started getting talents from historically marginalised backgrounds, caste backgrounds, school backgrounds, ethnic backgrounds etc.
Jose joined The Caravan in 2009 as the youngest Executive Editor at the age of 29. Throughout his tenure, he played a key role in uncovering several major stories, including the death of Justice B. H. Loya, the controversial Commonwealth Games scandal, the Adani Colgate scam, and the pernicious rise of Hindutva terrorism. He was committed to increasing the diversity quotient in The Caravan and started diversity hiring in 2011. Since then, The Caravan has been able to attract talent from historically marginalized backgrounds, including different castes, ethnicities, and school backgrounds.
Jose shared his future plans to write a book, which will be a reported history of recent times. He expressed his predilection for reporting and writing, which he had not been able to do as much as he would have liked while serving as an editor. He considered himself a reporter who was caged in an editor's room and felt that he needed to fulfill his reporting inclinations through the reporters he supervised. He is contracted to write the book with a major publisher and is eager to finish it soon.
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