వైవిద్య రాగాల వీణ – తెలంగాణ : Cover story of Sunday ‘Vaartha’ (16 September 2007)  is an example of plagiarism, sadly that is widespread in Telugu writing.  It is a good story. But not done in right way. 

The cover story of eight pages (page 12 to 19) is a picturesque tale with photos taken from ‘Spirit of Telangana 2007′ Calendar and TUC website. ‘Vaartha’ cover story has all its pictures – eight pictures on the cover from Utsav.

And eight page story has fifteen more pictures depicting culture and monuments of varied districts of Telangana.

23 pictures altogether are taken from the Utsav website and the photo credits were neatly deleted from these pictures and used in the story. All these are works of several artists both professional and amateur

NO MENTION WAS MADE OF THE SOURCE OF THESE 23 PICTURES THAT MADE THE ‘VAARTHA’ STORY!

Several friends who have seen the calendar earlier felt bad at the collective work of Utsav team being ‘grabbed’ and displaced by the ‘Vaartha’ story. Photographers asked whether we gave consent for the publication of their pictures in the weekly. The calendar is a product of several individuals both in Utsav in Hyderabad and districts as well as several friends from abroad who were part of designing the product. Friends from NRI Telangana groups alongwith a large number of volunteers here were part of selecting the themes, pictures and research inputs and data that went into the calendar

Yesterday I spoke to the editor of Sunday ‘Vaartha’ Sri Gudipati on mobile (98487-87284) about their use of these pictures without a word of information and acknowledgement. Told him that we are shocked at the way Vaartha used works of others and told him that many photographers and friends were disappointed at ‘Vaartha’ behaving in such manner.

He was polite but the content of his talk was further disappointing. “ఆది ఇంటర్నెట్లోంచి తీసుకొన్నారనుకొన్నా ! ” (Oh ! I didn’t know it was from the Utsav Calendar, I thought it was from internet!)

Can material on internet be used and claimed by anybody as their own?
These kinds of views and practices are shocking and reflect lack of ethics in writing field.

He promised to publish acknowledgements and source of the pictures in the Sunday issue of 30 September!

Similar shocking act happened recently with Varavara Rao’s bathukamma song and audio taken from ‘Discovery Telangana’ by ‘Prajakala‘ without any acknowledgement. ‘Discovery Telangana’ objected to the way ‘Prajakala‘ behaved. Subsequently it acknowledged the source but pretended ignorance of how it happened. Not a single word of apology for its practice

I wonder when the responsible people- journalists, academicians, intellectuals and activist writers- will also respect basic ethics of writing to admit and acknowledge the source.

‘Grabbing’ writings and works whether they are in print form or on internet are condemnable acts! And ‘Vaartha’’s act is undesirable.

We expect all concerned would help build a responsible way of writing

Jai Telangana

Mamidi Bharath Bhushan,
Chairman, Telangana Utsav Committee

PS: The ‘Vaartha’ article used liberally the pictures and data from Spirit of Telangana 2007 ; Spirit of Telangana 2006 ; and Bonalu pictures from TUC Flickr Photos

Cover page pictures
Kakatiya Thoranam by Ravindra Reddy
Bonalu byM Subhash Chandra
Charminar in water by Bhaskar/ Virtual Virtues
Mudupulu by Lakka Vidya Sagar
Bangle works by Bhaskar/ Virtual Virtues
Adilabad Basara temple by Bhaskar/ Virtual Virtues
Aksharabyasam Bhaskar/ Virtual Virtues
Kalashramam by G Bharath Bhushan

‘Vaartha’ page 12
Bonalu festival offerings by M Subhash Chandra
Nalgonda village by M Subhash Chandra

‘Vaartha’ page 13
Sammakka saarakka jatara by Veeresh Babu (Blues)
Koya velpu patam by Mamidi Bharath Bhushan

‘Vaartha’ page 14
Kanteswara temple of nizamabad by Bhaskar/ Virtual Virtues

‘Vaartha’ page 15
Pillalalmarri by Bhaskar/ Virtual Virtues
Alampur temple by Bhaskar/ Virtual Virtues

‘Vaartha’ page 16
Vemulavada aalayam by Bhaskar/ Virtual Virtues
Gangireddula performing doodoo basavann by M Subhash Chandra

‘Vaartha’ page 17
Medak town – a birds eye view by L Vidya Sagar

‘Vaartha’ page 18
Moula Ali Dargah by Keith Trevor
Tirumalgherry church by Keith Trevor
Ganesh festival of Hyderabad by Keith Trevor
Bathukamma festival by Veeresh Babu (Blues)

‘Vaartha’ page 19

Nandi statue of Warangal by Bhaskar/ Virtual Virtues
Invaluable work of several artists! And several more behind the pictures and in designing the art works