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Available inEnglish, Hindi
Key people
Launched6 February 2012; 11 years ago (2012-02-06)
Current statusActive

Newslaundry is an Indian media watchdog[1] that provides media critique, reportage and satirical commentary.[2] It was founded in 2012 by Abhinandan Sekhri, Madhu Trehan and Prashant Sareen, all of whom earlier worked in print or television journalism.[3] It was India's first subscription-driven website when launched, and since then other platforms have followed a similar model.[4] In contrast to news websites such as The Wire, The Quint, ThePrint or, Newslaundry solely relies on public subscriptions, instead of donations or advertisements, for revenue.[5]

In 2015, executive editor Manisha Pande and Sandeep Pai reported on how politicians misuse the public sector undertakings in India.[6] Their work won the Ramnath Goenka Excellence in Journalism Award for investigative reporting.[7] The platform also hosts podcasts dedicated to politics, culture and entertainment.[8][9]



Newslaundry does not rely on advertisement for its revenue, and claims to be solely reliant on subscriptions for their income. Their website offers two kinds of subscriptions, Disruptor and Game Changer. The subscriptions allows users access to all stories and podcasts, such as NL Hafta and Let's Talk About, interactions with the Newslaundry team and subscriber only events and discord server. They also allow the option for users to gift subscriptions.[10][11]


In addition to ground reporting and satirical commentary, Newslaundry hosts many podcasts, such as the flagship current affairs podcast NL Hafta and Awful and Awesome, which is dedicated to pop culture and entertainment, among others.[12]


Newslaundry has developed shows such as Clothesline (hosted by Madhu Trehan, currently on hiatus), Ye Bhi Theek Hai (hosted by Kunal Kamra and Sanjay Rajoura), TV Newsance (hosted by Manisha Pande), Back in Time, and NL Tippani (hosted by Atul Chaurasia) – all of which either probe and critique the Indian media through satire or explore socio-political issues in depth.[13]


BCCL defamation lawsuit

On 19 January 2021, the Bennett, Coleman, and Company Limited (BCCL), also commonly known as The Times Group, filed a ₹100 crore civil defamation suit against Newslaundry in the Bombay High Court. The suit alleged that Newslaundry had defamed the director of the BCCL Vineet Jain, as well as Rahul Shivshankar and Navika Kumar, who are the editors of their news channel Times Now. It claimed that an episode of Newslaundry's TV Newsance uploaded on October 10, 2020,[14] which criticised the news channel for its coverage of the arrest of actress Rhea Chakraborty, was "beyond the realm of satire, parody or spoof" and "false, baseless and highly defamatory". It further also claimed that the video uploaded on their channel on 27 November 2020 titled Explained: How to rig TRP[15] defamed and maligned the images of Shivashankar and Kumar.

Newslaundry responded to this suit by claiming that the legal notices was an attempt to silence criticism[16][17][18] and also said that "no one including media should be above scrutiny".[19]

TV Today Group lawsuit

On 26 October 2021, the India Today Group who run the English channel India Today and Hindi channel Aaj Tak filed a ₹2,00,00,100 civil defamation suit against Newslaundry in the Delhi High Court. The group also claimed that Newslaundry was "piggybacking" on the network and violating its copyright and that Newslaundry has harmed the channel's reputation.[20]

The lawsuit sought to remove 34 articles published on the Newslaundry website and 65 videos on the portal's YouTube channel. Furthermore, the suite seeks to remove similar content from Newslaundry's social media on Facebook and Twitter. The group also struck their YouTube channel was with fifty three copyright strikes which led to five videos being taken down and their channel being frozen for a period of three weeks where Newslaundry was barred from uploading any new videos.[21]

In response to this, Newslaundry co-founder Abhinandan Sekhri in a statement made to claimed that the case was frivolous. He said:

"It is alarming that these [organisations] are considered the high priests of independent news, free speech and freedom of the press. Now we know why the press and media has come to this stage.... Because of people like the ones in the management of India Today who think that this is a sensible lawsuit. If I were to review a book and I took a paragraph from it, no one goes around accusing me of copyright infringement of the book, but if someone critiques these news channel...since they are not used to being critiqued, they suddenly say that it is copyright infringement.... When we are calling something out, we have to show what we are calling out."[21]

Newslaundry has contested that Section 52 of the Indian Copyright Act provides for six exceptions one of which is to criticise or review the original content, and hence claimed that this suit is frivolous as it falls outside the purview of copyright.[21] In another statement made to the Indian Express, Abhinandan Sekhri said:

"What is alarming to me is that these are the people who are supposed to stand up for a free press and freedom of speech. India Today, which prides itself as a self-congratulatory, fantastic news brand, if this is their understanding of free press and freedom of speech, it explains the dismal state of media."[22]

Sakal Group lawsuit

On 16 September 2020, the Sakal Media group filed a ₹65 crore defamation notice on Newslaundry for news reports they published and FIR is against the reporter as he used Sakal's trademark logo. Newslaundry published news on 11 June 2020 about employment terminations of employees in Sakal Times happened in May 2020,[23] later Sakal Media Group legal department cleared the FIR, filed on 16 September, was only against the reporter for Trademark Infringement in his story and not against Newslaundry. Further investigation is ongoing.[24]


  1. ^ References for the term:
    • "Indian brands reckon with a new challenge: hate". BBC. 30 October 2020. Retrieved 9 February 2022.
    • Sachdev, Alisha (9 April 2018). "How Fake News Spreads in India". The Diplomat.
    • "Study finds SC and ST journalists missing from Indian media". Telegraph India. 4 August 2019.
    • "English newspapers are worse than Hindi on representing Dalit, Adivasi writers: Oxfam India report". The Caravan. 3 August 2019.
    • Buncombe, Andrew (7 November 2013). "The family feud which is gripping India's media: Editor of 'The Hindu' newspaper resigns". The Independent.
  2. ^ Upadhyay, Venkatesh (21 July 2013). "The third wave of digital news". Livemint.
  3. ^ "Can the digital revolution save Indian journalism?". Columbia Journalism Review.
  4. ^ Harlow, Summer; Chadha, Monica (26 April 2019). "Indian Entrepreneurial Journalism". Journalism Studies. 20 (6): 891–910. doi:10.1080/1461670X.2018.1463170. S2CID 150110223.
  5. ^ Bansal, Shuchi (27 October 2016). "The big digital paywall question". mint.
  6. ^ "RNG Awards: Winners in Print, Television and Digital media". 6 November 2016.
  7. ^ "Ramnath Goenka Excellence in Journalism Awards 2015: Full list of winners". 3 November 2016.
  8. ^ Bansal, Shuchi (27 October 2016). "The big digital paywall question". Livemint.
  9. ^ Venkataramakrishnan, Rohan. "Why the Indian podcasting industry needs more 'high-quality crap' in 2019".
  10. ^ "Welcome to Newslaundry. Sabki dhulai. You watch. We're watching". Newslaundry. Retrieved 4 June 2021.
  11. ^ "Depth and breadth: How news organisations navigate trade-offs around building trust in news".
  12. ^ "Asia Society Staff Picks: Podcasts for the Quarantined Soul".
  13. ^ "TV Today Network takes Newslaundry to court, seeks Rs 2 crore in damages". 26 October 2021.
  14. ^ Toadies Banega Tu? | TV Newsance Episode: 107, retrieved 17 March 2021
  15. ^ EXPLAINED: BARC's TV audience measurement system is rotten | NL Cheatsheet, retrieved 17 March 2021
  16. ^ Scroll Staff. "Times Group files Rs 100-crore defamation case against 'Newslaundry' for videos on TV anchors". Retrieved 17 March 2021.
  17. ^ "Times of India parent company sues media watchdog Newslaundry for $13.7 million". Committee to Protect Journalists. 29 January 2021. Retrieved 17 March 2021.
  18. ^ "Times Group sends notice to Newslaundry for Rs 100 crore, unfazed NL does a takedown of notice". The News Minute. 21 December 2020. Retrieved 17 March 2021.
  19. ^ Hakim, Sharmeen (9 February 2021). "'No One Including Media Should Be Above Scrutiny': Newslaundry Responds to Times Group's Rs 100 Cr Defamation Suit". Retrieved 5 June 2021.
  20. ^ "TV Today network sues Newslaundry in defamation case, seeks Rs. 2 crore | Web News Observer". Web News Observer. 26 October 2021. Retrieved 26 October 2021.
  21. ^ a b c Scroll Staff. "India Today Group files Rs 2 crore suit against 'Newslaundry' for defamation, copyright infringement". Retrieved 28 October 2021.
  22. ^ "TV Today Network takes Newslaundry to court, seeks Rs 2 crore in damages". The Indian Express. 27 October 2021. Retrieved 28 October 2021.
  23. ^ Goyal, Prateek. "'They wanted to get rid of us': Over 50 people laid off as Sakal Times closes down". Newslaundry. Retrieved 25 November 2021.
  24. ^ "As Sakal Group files FIR against Newslaundry reporter, portal alleges 'personal vendetta'". The Indian Express. 4 November 2020. Retrieved 25 November 2021.