Friday, March 21, 2014

KUENSEL - The Grand Old Dad Among Bhutanese Newspapers

One of the first things Dasho Kinley Dorji (currently the Secretary of the Ministry of Information & Communications) did, as soon as he took over the Kuensel as its CEO some two decades back, was to redesign the Kuensel’s masthead. The paper’s present masthead was conceived and adopted by him.

Before the masthead was adopted, I was among the few Dasho Kinley consulted as to the appropriateness of the masthead. In particular he was in serious doubt whether the sentence “THAT THE PEOPLE SHALL BE INFORMED” was grammatically correct. Of that one I wasn’t sure either - but of one thing I was sure and I told him so - that the background color of the masthead - blue - looked YUCKY! The color did not change and neither did my opinion about it, to this day. However Dasho Kinley went ahead and adopted the current masthead - yucky color and grammatically doubtful sentence et all. As far as Dasho Kinley was concerned, he made sure that he went through the motion of seeking popular opinion but as the top dog of the paper - he did exactly as he pleased - opinions be damned!

Since then, Kuensel never failed to INFORM the people. But the words
THAT THE PEOPLE SHALL BE INFORMED” did not bind them to MISINFORM the people from time to time. Infact, they did so with unfailing regularity.

Look at the following. The Prime Minister dedicates the project to the IVth Druk Gyalpo - but Kuensel says that it is to the Prime Minister.

The following news report in the Kuensel is encouraging. The civil servants are going to be given free plots of land - to grow vegetables. That is a great idea - it will boost vegetable production and one never knows -  this may be one job at which they might excel!

Best of luck to the new breed of farmers.


  1. Kuensel is quite right, Yeshey. The Health minister is lending a helping hand to the PM in planting the tree. Nowhere does the writing indicate that the project is dedicated to the PM. IT is dedicated to the IVth Druk Gyalpo.

  2. Hi Anon,

    I know that .... I am just poking fun because of the manner in which the photo was labeled. If they had written something like “Health Minister renders a helping hand to the Prime Minister in planting a rhododendron tree” …. There would have been no room for MISINFORMATION :)-

  3. well, re the mast head. i'm sure all advice is taken for what it is worth. and a good manager will make a decision having considered all the advice received.

    in anycase, i thought the kuensel blue was an easy way for them to consistently reproduce acorporate colour using one ink "cyan blue" in the printing process and not worry too much about colour accuracy... but that is my assumption.

  4. Hi Au... u got the masthead story totally wrong... kuensel masthead during Chief's time never had a background colour. this one you have pointed out was redesigned in 2008 with a help of a newspaper designer Peter Ong from Australia.. anyway just for feedback.

  5. Chencho?

    Come to think of it .... you could be right ... but I am certain that the words "THAT THE PEOPLE SHALL BE INFORMED” was coined by him since I remember that he asked me about it. I remember that clearly. Regarding the Blue color .... now that you point out ... I may be wrong that it was adopted by Dasho Kinley .... but I know for sure that I clearly told the person who sought my opinion that it was Y U C K Y!

  6. Earlier it was "that the Nation shall be informed"