MUMBAI: The pressure-filled TV news business has had another casualty. Jehangir Pocha, the co-promoter of IndiMedia Pvt Ltd, which earlier owned the NewsX channel, died earlier this morning in Gurgaon following a cardiac arrest.
Pocha came into the limelight after he worked out a rescue package to bail out the channel in 2009 along with Nai Duniya CEO Vinay Chhajlani. Launched originally by the eighties poster boy of television - Peter Mukerjea - as part of the INX Media group, it had fallen up on troubled times soon after its launch in 2008. Pocha was editor in chief at BusinessWorld maagazine when he partnered with Chhajlani.
NewsX continued, but desperately needed cash to run and Pocha and Chhajlani found a buyer in the Kartikeya Sharma owned Information TV (part of the ITV Group) and its associates in mid-2012. Even as Chhajlani exited, Pocha continued as the channel's editor in chief.
Born in Mumbai, Pocha did his Bachelors in Economics in 1990, followed by an MBA in Marketing in 1992 from the SP Jain Institute, Mumbai University. Later, he also did his Masters in Public Administration, Media and foreign policy from Harvard University Kennedy School of Government.
Pocha was The Boston Globe’s Beijing-based China correspondent from 2003-2007. Prior to that he spent about a decade in the IT industry, holding management positions with start-ups and Fortune 500 companies in the US and Singapore.
His passing away has been mourned by many. Amomg them the prime minister Narendra Modi who said: "I am shocked and saddened to hear about Jehangir Pocha's demise. I pay my condolence to his family in this hour of grief. May his soul rest in peace."
The Broadcast Editors' Association sent out a statement condoling his sad demise: "It is big loss to the world of TV journalism. Jehangir was a dear colleague of ours and was a guiding force in BEA's activities."
Former IBN18 editor in chief Rajdeep Sardesai tweeted, "Deep condolences to family of Jehangir Pocha. Life is transient, but was lived well. RIP"
Anupam Kher's tweet: "Can't believe that
@JehangirPocha is no more. Just spoke to him few days back. One of the best journalists & human beings. So so sad. RIP"
Journalist and digital entrepreneur Govind Ethiraj tweeted "RIP wonderful guy, India's best China journalist, great writer."
The soft spoken Pocha's tweeted late last night: "Hurrying Home..."
Pocha's tweet was in response to a news clipping that he had attached with it. It referred to a High court judgement stating that "constantly reaching home late from work without informing your wife amounts to cruelty. "
He is survived by his wife Ranjana and twins.