Madhu Trehan


Madhu Trehan
Alma materWelham Girls' School
Columbia University, New York
OccupationJournalist, Columnist, Author
Known forFounding editor, India Today (1975)
Notable work
Tehelka as Metaphor (2009)
Spouse(s)Naresh Trehan
RelativesAroon Purie (brother)

Madhu Purie Trehan (born 1940s) is an Indian journalist. She is also the co-founder and editor-in-chief of a digital media portal called Newslaundry.[1][2]


Trehan studied at Welham Girls' School in Dehradun, graduating in 1962.[3][4] In 1968, she went to Harrow Technical College & School of Arts in London to study journalistic photography.[5] She earned a master's degree in journalism from Columbia University, New York in 1972.[6] While in New York City, she worked at the United Nations in their press department, and served as an editor for a weekly newspaper, India Abroad.[6]


Trehan returned to India in 1975[6] when she founded and started the news magazine India Today, with her father, V.V.Purie, owner of Thomson Press.[7][8] Trehan left the magazine to her brother's stewardship in 1977 during her pregnancy, and returned to New York to start her family.[7][9] Upon her return to India in 1986, Trehan produced and anchored Newstrack, India's first video news magazine,[10] which earned her a reputation as a pioneering investigative journalist.[6]

In August 1994, Madhu Trehan took the rare and only interview of Yakub Memon who was convicted in 1993 Bombay bombings.[11][12]

In 2009, Trehan published her first book, Tehelka as Metaphor: Prism Me a Lie, Tell Me a Truth, examining the 2001 Operation West End exposé and its aftermath.[9][13][14]

Trehan has written for leading news magazines and newspapers such as Outlook India[15] and Hindustan Times.[16]

In 2000, she launched Wah India, a website and print magazine. She, along with three other colleagues, also launched a crowd-sourced media critique website called Newslaundry in February 2012.[17]

2001 Delhi High Court ruling

On 25 May 2001 the Delhi High Court ruled 3–2 that Trehan and four other journalists on Wah India were guilty of contempt of court for an article which they published "rating the High Court's Judges in terms of various attributes and qualities". The article purportedly interviewed 50 unnamed senior lawyers to reach its conclusions. In April, the court had ordered Delhi police to seize copies of the offending issue from newsstands and raid the magazine's Delhi office. The court also banned the media from reporting on the case, but withdrew the ban on 2 May in response to media protest. Three days after being found in contempt of court, Trehan and her colleagues apologised to the justices, and their apology was accepted.[18]


Trehan is married to Indian heart surgeon[19] Naresh Trehan.[20] Aroon Purie, the former founder-publisher and editor-in-chief of India Today, is her brother, and Bollywood actress Koel Purie is her niece.[21][22]


  • Tehelka as Metaphor: Prism Me a Lie, Tell Me a Truth. Roli Books. 2010. ISBN 978-8174365804.


  1. ^ Sharma, Disha. "Digital media startup Newslaundry gets funding from Omidyar, others".
  2. ^ Newslaundry. "Newslaundry | Sabki Dhulai". Newslaundry. Retrieved 10 January 2018.
  3. ^ "Old school skirt - Indian Express". 24 June 2006. Retrieved 12 April 2020.
  4. ^ "Dehradun's journey to town of schools, with Miss Oliphant". The Tribune India. 22 September 2019. Retrieved 12 April 2020.
  5. ^ "Madhu Trehan | Best Selling Indian Authors". Tehelka as Metaphor. Retrieved 12 April 2020.
  6. ^ a b c d "Jury". Light of India Awards. Retrieved 21 August 2012.
  7. ^ a b Bhandare, Namita (21 May 2011). "70's: The decade of innocence". Hindustan Times. Archived from the original on 17 August 2012. Retrieved 21 August 2012.
  8. ^ Kaminsky, Arnold P.; Long, Roger D. (2011). India Today: An Encyclopedia of Life in the Republic. ABC-CLIO. p. 347. ISBN 978-0313374623.
  9. ^ a b "Tehelka trail". The Tribune. 21 April 2009. Retrieved 21 August 2012.
  10. ^ Nanda, Har Parshad (1992). The Days of My Years. Viking. p. 212. ISBN 9780670847273.
  11. ^ ""I Came Back to my Motherland": Yakub Memon's Only Interview".
  12. ^ "1993 Mumbai blasts convict Yakub Memon's exclusive interview".
  13. ^ Banerjee, Sudeshna (2009). "When corruption is a daily habit". The Telegraph. Retrieved 21 August 2012.
  14. ^ Tripathi, Amrita (19 January 2009). "Madhu Trehan's new book on Operation West-end". IBN. Archived from the original on 4 September 2009. Retrieved 21 August 2012.
  15. ^ "Madhu Trehan". Outlook India. 2012. Retrieved 21 August 2012.[permanent dead link]
  16. ^ Trehan, Madhu (1 March 2009). "Who's afraid of Karan Thapar?". Hindustan Times. Archived from the original on 15 February 2011. Retrieved 21 August 2012.
  17. ^ "Author, journalist Madhu Trehan and three other colleagues launch". India Digital Review. 14 February 2012. Retrieved 21 August 2012.
  18. ^ Venkatesan, V (17–20 July 2001). "Contempt and Punishment: The Delhi High Court's verdict in the case against wah india and the magazine's response to it raise questions about the way the judiciary deals with contempt of court charges in general". Frontline. 18 (14).
  19. ^ "Dr Naresh Trehan profile". Credihealth. 2017. Retrieved 20 March 2017.
  20. ^ "Ace of hearts: Dr Naresh Trehan". Harmony India. 2012. Retrieved 17 August 2012.
  21. ^ Roy, Amit (17 December 2014). "Red Hot". The Telegraph. Retrieved 5 December 2017.[permanent dead link]
  22. ^ "Newstrack – The video magazine that served real issues to news-hungry Indians in DD era". The Print. 23 June 2019. Retrieved 16 August 2021.

External links

  • Madhu Trehan on Twitter Edit this at Wikidata
  • Madhu Trehan on Facebook
  • Tehelka As Metaphor website