Times of Oman
Nov 28, 2015 LAST UPDATED AT 08:27 AM GMT
A club with strong social commitment
December 4, 2012 | 12:00 AM
Ahmed Essa Al Zedjali, Chief Executive officer, MPPH Pic: Agencies

Muscat:It was keenly awaited and now it is finally in place. The executive committee of Times of Oman Reader's Club has been formed to carry the forum forward and fulfill its objectives. The club intends to promote charitable and cultural activities, encourage learning and education through scholarship offers, conduct different kinds of events suitable for all age group, organise sports etc. In short, it is a club unlike common clubs; a club with a strong social commitment of the readers, by the readers and for the readers of Times of Oman.

The readers have been the biggest capital in the creation of Times of Oman as a brand. Its leadership in the market has been conclusive where it had contemporaries who never turned into competitors. And for this we certainly owe everything to our readers.

The management committee is formed by pivotal members namely Vinod Panicker(Chief Patron),Rajive Ahuja(President),Mohammed Osama Rawat(General Secretary),Sanaullah Rasel(Treasurer),Padmini Atal(Charity Secretary), Muhammad Zakariya Babur(Sports/Cultural Secretary),P.M. Jabir,Rejimon K.,Clarence N. Carlos,Somabandhu Kodikara, Bridget Era Ganguly and Michele Ni Thoghdha.

Our journey through time for the past 37 years has been gratifying because we have never tried to impose from atop a pulpit and thrust down on our readers what they did not want. On the contrary, the umbilical chord between Times of Oman and its readers has only strengthened over the years; shaped the publication's growth.

The Times of Oman Reader's Club is truly a reflection of the Times' philosophy — an effort towards achieving a new-age connect with the readers and to move away from the distant relationship that newspapers have had till yesterday.

A newspaper, irrespective of its size and influence it exerts, does not just offer information and opinions to be read, discussed and debated. It is an important institution on which a society hinges rather heavily. And, therefore, a newspaper has strong social obligations which Times of Oman intends to fulfill through its readers' club.

To stand beside humanity in distress is a primary obligation. The Times of Oman Reader's Club will, henceforth, be functioning as a nodal forum in standing by every single individual in trouble and work towards helping them tide over their misery. It will also offer scholarships to deserving expatriate students... And be involved in many more social activities.

In the past decade-and-a-half dissemination of information and daily news has undergone a radical transformation. And so has the characters of dailies across spectrum. Newspapers, daily and otherwise, and even periodicals now lay greater emphasis on direct interaction with their readers and, therefore, relevance of readers' opinion on the content, design and other aspects of newspapers and magazines are increasingly becoming important.
We can recall that even two decades ago the readers' responses were given little importance and the column where readers' opinions were published was given scanty space either on the editorial pages or tucked somewhere inside. Those days have changed and changed forever.

Opinion, views and comments of the readers' are today considered an integral part of commentaries that publications, dailies and periodicals, publish. These opinions, views and comments are now treated with the same degree of value along with the articles written by columnists. In fact, there are innumerable instances of how opinions of the readers have forced authorities to change or modify or amend their editorial policies and stands.
The Times of Oman Reader's Club offers us and our readers exactly what we have long been looking for. This unique club is by our readers, of our readers and for our readers.  In the past one year the Club has evolved into a major advocacy group in the Sultanate offering people across spectrum the most appropriate forum for which they have long been waiting.

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