Wednesday, February 24, 2010



                            Emperor Asoka’s pillar inscriptions & rock edicts in different parts of the Mauryan Empire during 3rd century B.C are considered examples of imperial political communication to the informed & literate section of the population. Ashoka used the Prakrit language in his communication on ethics & morals as evidence by his inscriptions.
                            The learning languages were confined to high casts, the aristocracy, priests, army personnel & landowners. Another feature of communication in ancient India was the emphasis placed on oral & aural systems. Writing was done on palm leaves using a style, but the written documents were considered too scared to be touched or used by the lower classes. The ruling class used certain methods for coding, transmitting & decoding messages secretly through the network of spies to information about neighboring enemies.
                             According to historians of journalism, news was collected in a well-organized manner under Akbar the Great. In 1574, Akbar established a recording office that helped later medieval historians to gather materials for chronicles.

The Bengal Gazette
                          Founded by James Augustus Hickey (surname) or Hicky, a highly eccentric Irishman who had previously spent two years in gaol for debt, Hickey's Bengal Gazette or the Calcutta General Advertiser was the first English language newspaper, and indeed the first printed newspaper, to be published in the Indian sub-continent.
                      It was a weekly newspaper, and was founded in 1779, in Calcutta, the capital of British India. The memoirist William Hickey (who, confusingly, was not in fact related to the paper's founder) describes its establishment shortly after he had succeeded (in his capacity as an attorney-at-law) in having James Hicky released from debtor's gaol:
                        "At the time I first saw Hicky he had been about seven years in India. During his confinement he met with a treatise upon printing, from which he collected sufficient information to commence  as a   printer, there never having been a press in occurred to Hicky that great benefit might arise from setting on foot a public newspaper, nothing of that kind ever having appeared. Upon his types &c., therefore reaching him, he issued proposals for printing a weekly paper, which, meeting with extraordinary encouragement, he speedily issued his first work. As a novelty every person read it, and was delighted. Possessing a fund of low wit, his paper abounded with proof of that talent. He had also a happy knack at applying appropriate nicknames and relating satirical anecdotes".
                                Unfortunately for Hicky he himself benefited little from the paper, as William Hickey further tells us that he allowed it "to become the channel of personal invective, and the most scurrilous abuse of individuals of all ranks, high and low, rich and poor, many were attacked in the most wanton and cruel manner.His utter ruin was the consequence”. The paper itself survived until the 1830s, when its circulation was exceeded by The Englishman (also published from Calcutta from 1818, and now known as The Statesman).

                                                  The first newspaper in an Indian language was the Samachar Darpan in Bengali. The first issue of this daily was published from the Serampore Mission Press on May 23, 1818. In the same year, Ganga Kishore Bhattacharya started publishing another newspaper in Bengali, the Bengal Gazetti. On July 1, 1822 the first Gujarati newspaper the Bombay Samachar was published from Bombay, which is still extant. The first Hindi newspaper, the Samachar Sudha Varshan began in 1854. Since then, the prominent Indian languages in which papers have grown over the years are Hindi, Marathi, Malayalam,Kannada, Tamil, Telugu, Urdu and Bengali.

The Indian language papers have taken over the English press as per the latest NRS survey of newspapers. The main reasons being the marketing strategy followed by the regional papers, beginning with Eenadu, a telegu daily started by Ramoji Rao. The second reason being the growing literacy rate. Increase in the literacy rate has direct positive effect on the rise of circulation of the regional papers.

The people are first educated in their mother tongue as per their state in which they live for e.g. students in Maharashtra are compulsory taught Marathi language and hence they are educated in their state language and the first thing a literate person does is read papers and gain knowledge and hence higher the literacy rate in a state the sales of the dominating regional paper in that state rises.

The next reason being localisation of news. Indian regional papers have several editions for a particular State for complete localisation of news for the reader to connect with the paper. Malayala Manorama has about 10 editions in Kerala itself and six others outside Kerala. Thus regional papers aim at providing localised news for their readers. Even Advertisers saw the huge potential of the regional paper market, partly due to their own research and more due to the efforts of the regional papers to make the advertisers aware of the huge market.


                            Digdarshan was the first Indian language newspaper. It started in April 1818 by the Serampur missionaries William Carcy, Joshua Marshman & William Ward. They soon started another journal in June of the same year & named it Samachar Darpan.
The famous Raja Ram Mohan Roy also brought out periodicals in English, Bengali & Persian. Some of Roy’s papers were Sambad Kaumadi, Brahmical Magazine, Mirat-ul-Akhbar, and Bangadoota & Bengal Herald
Amnodaya, a distinguished journal in the Assamese language was started in 1846 under the editorship of the Reverend Oliver.T.Cutter.

The newspaper with the greatest longevity in India, Mumbai Samachar was also the first Gujarati Newspaper. It was established in 1822 by Farduvji Marzaban as a weekly & then became a daily in 1832.
The first Hindi daily was samachar Sudhavarshan (Calcutta, 1854). Later Samayadant Martand, Banaras Akhbar, Shimila Akbar & Malwa Akhbar came out.
Calcutta was the birth place not only of English, Bengali & Hindi journalism. The first Urdu newspaper was published by Urdu Akhbar in the second decade of the 19th century.
Kannada Samachar was the earliest Kannada journal, according to many scholars. But others think that the first Kannada journal was Mangaloora Samachar. Later Subudhi Prakasha, Kannada Vaatika, Amnodaya, Mahilaasakhi & Sarvamitra came out during the 18th century.

Mathrubhumi, Malayala Manorama, Kerala Kanmudi are the main newspapers of Kerala. The other daily newspapers are Desabhimani, Mangalam, Madhyamam, Chandrika, Deepika etc.
Darpan was the first Marathi newspaper started on 6 January 1832. Kesari & Sudarak were other papers of the 18th century. Induprakash was an Anglo-Marathi daily established in 1862.
The first Oriya magazine Junaruna was published by the Orissa Mission Press in 1849 under the editorship of Charles Lacey. Then came another publication from the same press ‘Prabhatchandrika’, under the editorship of William Lacey. Utkal Sahitya, Bodhadayini, Baleshwar Sambad Balika etc… started in the 18th century.
Although Maharaja Ranjit Singh encouraged the development of Punjabi journalism. The earliest Punjabi newspaper was a missionary newspaper. The first printing press in Punjab was established in Ludhiana in 1809.
The first periodical ‘Tamil Patrika’ a monthly was brought out in 1831 by the Religious Tract Society in Madras; it lasted till 1833.
The next periodical weekly was the Dina Vartamani published in Madras from 1856 by the Dravidian press & edited by the Reverend P.Percival. Later Swadeshamitran, Deshabaktan etc… were other papers.
Kandukuri Veeresaliongam Pantulu, known as the Father of the renaissance movement in Andhra & the founder of modern Telugu, sparked a social reform movement through his weekly Vivekavardhini. He also founded separate journals for women; Satihitabodhini.

The Hindu
    The Hindu is a leading English-language Indian daily newspaper. With a circulation of 1.45 million, The Hindu is the second-largest circulated daily English newspaper in India after Times of India, and slightly ahead of The Economic Times. According to the Indian Readership Survey (IRS) 2008 The Hindu is the third most-widely read English newspaper in India (after Times of India and Hindustan Times) with a readership of 5.2 million. It has its largest base of circulation in South India, especially Tamil Nadu. Headquartered at Chennai (formerly called Madras), The Hindu was published weekly when it was launched in 1878, and started publishing daily in 1889.
The first issue of The Hindu was published on September 20, 1878, by a group of six young men, led by G. Subramania Aiyer, a radical social reformer and school teacher from Thiruvaiyyar near Thanjavur. Aiyer, then 23, along with his 21-year-old fellow-tutor and friend at Pachaiyappa's College, M. Veeraraghavachariar of Chingleput, and four law students, T.T. Rangachariar, P.V. Rangachariar, D. Kesava Rao Pant and N. Subba Rao Pantulu were members of the Triplicane Literary Society. The British-controlled English language local newspapers had been campaigning against the appointment of the first Indian, T. Muthuswami Iyer, to the Bench of the Madras High Court in 1878. "The Triplicane Six," in an attempt to counter the dominant attitudes in the English language press started The Hindu on one British rupee and twelve annas of borrowed money. Aiyer was the editor and Veeraraghavachariar the Managing Director. The first editorial declared, " the   Press does not only give expression to public opinion, but also modifies and moulds it."

The Times of India
The Times of India (TOI) is a popular English-language broadsheet daily newspaper in India. It has the largest circulation among all English-language daily newspapers in the world, across all formats (broadsheet, compact, Berliner and online).  It is owned and managed by Bennett, Coleman & Co. Ltd. which is owned by the Sahu Jain family.
In 2008, the newspaper reported that (with a circulation of over 3.14 million) it was certified by the Audit Bureau of Circulations as the world's largest selling English-language daily newspaper, placing as the 8th largest selling newspaper in any language in the world. According to the Indian Readership Survey (IRS) 2008, the Times of India is the most widely read English newspaper in India with a readership of 13.3 million. This ranks the Times of India as the top English newspaper in India by readership. According to ComScore, TOI Online is the world's most-visited newspaper website with 159 million page views in May 2009, ahead of the New York Times, The Sun, Washington Post, Daily Mail and USA Today websites.
The Times of India was founded on November 3, 1838 as The Bombay Times and Journal of Commerce, during the British Raj. It was adopted in 1861. Published every Saturday and Wednesday, The Bombay Times and Journal of Commerce was launched as a bi-weekly edition. It contained news from Europe, the Americas, and the Subcontinent, and was conveyed between India and Europe via regular steamships. The daily editions of the paper were started from 1850 and by 1861, the Bombay Times was renamed The Times of India. In the 19th century this newspaper company employed more than 800 people and had a sizable circulation in India and Europe. Originally British-owned and controlled, its last British editor was Ivor S. Jehu, who resigned the editorship in 1950. It was after India's Independence that the ownership of the paper passed on to the then famous industrial family of Dalmiyas and later it was taken over by Sahu Shanti Prasad Jain of the Sahu Jain group from Bijnore, UP.
The Times of India is published by the media group Bennett, Coleman & Co. Ltd. This company, along with its other group companies, known as The Times Group, also publishes The Economic Times, Mumbai Mirror, the Navbharat Times (a Hindi-language daily broadsheet), the Maharashtra Times (a Marathi-language daily broadsheet).
The Times is self-declared as a liberal newspaper, and is sometimes described as irreverent.
The present management of The Times Group has been instrumental in changing the outlook of Indian journalism. In India, as is elsewhere in the world, the Editor of a newspaper has traditionally been considered as the most notable position in a newspaper set up. The Times of India, however, changed this in the early 1990s, in keeping with the management policy of treating the newspaper as just another brand in the market. The main newspaper and its many sub-editions are now run by editors who are appointed within the ranks and the company gives equal chance to everyone to occupy the editor's seat. The Times Group also places equal focus and importance to every department and function - which has made it a professional entity and ensured its place as the most profitable newspaper in the country.
In January 2007, the Kannada edition was launched in Bengaluru and in April 2008 the Chennai edition was launched. Their main rivals in India are The Hindu and Hindustan Times, which hold second and third position by circulation.

Hindustan Times
Hindustan Times (HT) is an Indian daily English-language newspaper founded in 1924 with roots in the independence movement. The name comes from the Persian word 'Hindostān', which amongst Muslims is synonymous for northern and central India. Hindustan Times is the flagship publication of HT Media Ltd. In 2008, the newspaper reported that with a (circulation of over 1.14 million) it was certified by the Audit Bureau of Circulations ranking them as the third largest circulatory daily English newspaper in India. Indian Readership Survey (IRS) 2008, revealed that HT has a readership of (6.6 million) placing them as the second most-widely read English Newspaper in India after Times of India. It has a wide reach in northern India (barring Southern India), with simultaneous editions from New Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata, Lucknow, Patna, Ranchi, Bhopal and Chandigarh. The print location of Jaipur was discontinued from June 2006. HT has also launched a youth daily HT Next in 2004. The Mumbai edition was launched on 14 July 2005 and the Kolkata edition was launched on early 2000.
Other sister publications of Hindustan Times are Mint (English business daily), Hindustan (Hindi Daily), Nandan (monthly children's magazine) and Kadambani (monthly literary magazine). The media group also owns a radio channel Fever and organises an annual Luxury Conference which has featured speakers like designer Diane von Fürstenberg, shoemaker Christian Louboutin, Gucci CEO Robert Polet and Cartier MD Patrick Normand. Hindustan Times is owned by the KK Birla branch of the Birla family.

Dainik Jagran
Dainik Jagran is a daily newspaper in India. It is 2nd in India and 17th worldwide for the greatest circulation of a daily newspaper.
Dainik Jagran, is a Hindi newspaper in India. It is the 17th most widely read newspaper in the world. It was the brainchild of the aggressive freedom fighter Mr. Puranchandra Gupta. The first edition was launched in Jhansi in 1942m and in 1947 Dainik Jagran shifted its headquarters to Kanpur, where it launched its second edition.
More than 55.7 million people reach out for Dainik Jagran making it the largest read daily of India. Dainik Jagran’s 37 editions carve a huge swathe across eleven states – Madhya Pradesh (Bhopal, Indore, Gwalior, Jabalpur, Ratlam, Satna & Saugor) along with the states of Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Punjab, Haryana, Bihar, Jharkhand, Himachal Pradesh, Delhi, West Bengal and Jammu& Kashmir .
Some supplements offered by the Dainik Jagaran are: Jhankaar ,Yatra,Sangini ,Josh,Nai,,Rahein and E - PAPER

Dainik Bhaskar
Dainik Bhaskar is a Hindi-language daily newspaper of India published by Bhaskar Group. It was started in year 1958 from Bhopal, the capital city of Madhya Pradesh. Its is owned by the Agrawal family in Bhopal and its current national editor is Shravan Garg.
Dainik Bhaskar was first published in Bhopal and Gwalior of the central province. The newspaper was launched in year 1956 to fulfill the need for a Hindi language daily, by the name Subah Savere in Bhopal and Good Morning India in Gwalior in year 1957, it was renamed as Bhaskar Samachar In year 1958 it was renamed as Dainik Bhaskar
Dainik Bhaskar has 27 editions in 9 states- Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan, Chattisgarh, Haryana, Delhi, Punjab , Himachal Pradesh, and the Union Territory of Chandigarh.
In Gujarat, Bhaskar Group publishes Divya Bhaskar a Gujarati daily launched in 2003. This ;aunch is a case study in IIM ( Indian Institute of management - Ahmedabad) and the door-to-door-twin-contact launch programme has been recognised as an Orbit shifting innovation. It has won Business Process Innovation award by Marico Foundation.
Divya Bhaskar is the largest circulated daily of Gujarat as per ABC ( audit Beauro of circulation ) and has the maximum edition by any newspaper in Gujarat. It is published from Ahmedabad, Baroda, Surat, Rajkot,Jamnagar, Mehsana, Bhavnagar ( saurashtra Samachatr ).
The company launched English newspaper DNA in Mumbai in 2004 in partnership with the Zee Group. DNA is today published from Mumbai, Bangalore, Pune, Ahmedabad and Jaipur. DNA is the second largest broadsheet newspaper of Mumbai. as per Indian Readership survey ( IRS R2 09)
Sambad Prabhakar
Sambad Prabhakar or Sombod Provokar was a newspaper created by Ishwar Chandra Gupta in 1831. It was a newspaper read by many and included views on: religion, politics, society, and India as well as covering literature and foreign news.
Sambad Prabhakar was the brainchild of Ishwar Chandra Gupta. He was patronized by Yogendra Mohan Thakur of Pathurighata. It began as a weekly newspaper launched on January 28, 1831 (16 Magh 1237BS). As stated, Mr. Thakur was the backbone to this paper and his death caused the paper to close publication in 1832.

 In 1836, the newspaper was revived by Ishwar Chandra Gupta and appeared as a tri-weekly on August 10, 1836. The Thakurs of Pathurighata lent a helping hand to the paper again and in 1837 the Sambad Prabhakar became the first Bengali language daily on June
14, 1839.

Samachar Darpan
Samachar Darpan was a Bengali weekly newspaper published by the Baptist Missionary Society from the Baptist Mission Press at Serampore in early half of the 19th century. It is considered to be the first Indian language newspaper although some historians contend that the Bengali weekly Bengal Gazetti published by Ganga Kishore Bhattacharya had commenced publication first.
The success of the Bengali monthly Digdarshan encouraged the missionaries of the Baptist Missionary Society to embark on a new venture - the publication of a Bengali newspaper. The initiative was taken by Joshua Marshman and William Ward. At about the same time Harachandra Roy was also planning to start a Bengali newspaper from his own printing press at Chorebagan Steet in Calcutta. But before he could bring out his publication, the missionaries published the first issue of Samachar Darpan from the Baptist Mission Press at Serampore on May 23, 1818.
The newspaper was published every Saturday and was edited by John Clark Marshman. Its price was 4 annas per copy. It contained news, both Indian and European, collected from various sources, particular from English newspapers. It also contained brief articles on various subjects. It carried some material of educational value which made it respected and popular among the educated people. Both in typography and contents the Samachar Darpan maintained a fairly good standard. Its coverage of local news was certainly better than any other English or Indian language newspaper. By reprinting news and comments from other Bengali newspapers, the Samachar Darpan enabled its readers to have acquaintance with the different sections of the Bengali opinion.
The paper covered seven main beats: news of the government officials, government circulars, news of the European countries other than Britain, new events, birth, obituary and wedding, news of England, history of India and its scholarly books. It published useful information on the appointment of judges, collectors and so on.
From July 1829, the newspaper began to appear in both Bengali and English; the Bengali and English sections represented translation of each other. From January 1832, the Samachar Darpan began to be published twice a week - on Wednesday and Saturday. The price was raised from a rupee per month to one and a half. However as a result of the hike in postage duty the twice a week publication was discontinued and it again became a weekly newspaper from 8 November 1834.
In December 1841 the missionaries decided to discontinue the publication that ended with the last issue of December. The official reason stated was that John Clark Marshman who was still the editor of the newspaper couldn't find sufficient time owing to other pre-occupations. But the actual reason was that the Samachar Darpan, though very successful as a newspaper, had failed miserably in its primary objective - propagation of Christianity.
Samachar Darpan had an uninterrupted career till the end of 1841, when the publication was discontinued. By 1836, the circulation had reached 400, which was much higher than any other Indian language publication.
                         The era of Kannada newspapers in Karnataka started in the year 1843 when Hermann Mögling, a missionary from Basel Mission published the first Kannada newspaper called Mangalooru Samachara from Mangalore. The first Kannada periodical, Mysuru Vrittanta Bodhini was started by Bhashyam Bhashyacharya in Mysore. Shortly after the Indian Independence in 1948, K N Guruswamy started the company, The Printers (Mysore Private Limited) and started publishing two newspapers Deccan Herald (in English) and Prajavani (in Kannada). Vijaya Karnataka, owned by the Times of India group is the highest circulating Kannada newspaper in Karnataka. Times of India is the largest selling English newspaper in Karnataka. Tabloids like Lankesh Patrike and Hai Bangalore also find favour because of their publications of controversial topics. SudharmaHYPERLINK  \l "cite_note-ept-6", the only daily newspaper published in the Sanskrit language in India is printed and distributed from Mysore.Some other Kannada dailies are Udayavani, Samyukta karntaka and kannada prabha
The Deccan Herald is a popular English-language daily newspaper in the Indian state of Karnataka. It is published by the Printers (Mysore) Private Limited and has a number of editions in Bangalore, Hubli, Mysore, Mangalore and Gulbarga.
The Deccan Herald was started in 1948. Its sister publications are the Prajavani daily newspaper, the weekly magazine Sudha, and the monthly magazine Mayura, all of which are published in Kannada. The head office of the Deccan Herald is on MG Road, Bangalore.
According to the Indian Readership Survey (Round One) 2009, The Deccan Herald has a readership of 860,000. The ABC certified figures for the first half of 2008 put the daily paid circulation (number of bought copies as opposed to number of copies read) at 214,797 for Karnataka. For the January-June 2008 period, The Deccan Herald had a circulation of 145,656 for the Bangalore city area.
Prajavani (Kannada for Voice of the People) is a leading Kannada-language newspaper in the Indian state of Karnataka. It is a sister publication of the Deccan Herald. As of 2006 update  , it had a circulation of 364,000, making it the second-largest-circulation newspaper in Karnataka (after The Hindu), and the largest-circulation Kannada-language newspaper in the state


                                 The first newspaper in Marathi was Darpan launched in Mumbai on January six 1832 by Balshastri Jambhekar. It was a weekly. The first Marathi daily newspaper Sandesh (now defunct) was started in 1915. Although it was a daily, it was dominated by views, as was the case with weeklies of that period. Other dailies like Dnyanprakash followed but most of them also were viewspapers. Sakaal, launched on January 01, 1932, was the first daily publication focussed to publish a wide range of fresh news on local, regional, national, and international events. Sakaal's founder publisher editor N B Parulekar ran the newspaper on sound management principles without compromising on credibility and objectivity of news. He is described as Pioneer in Modern Journalism not only in Marathi but all other Indian languages. Sakaal survived even after his death in 1973 and grew to a higher stature. This is considered to be creditable to Dr Parulekar because several other daily newspapers and magazines of his time have disappeared from the scene one after another.

                           Maharashtra state now has 130 Marathi daily newspapers as per the Registrar of Newspapers for India annual report for 2005-06. Marathi holds third position with the 130 dailies, Hindi leading with 942 newspapers followed by 201 in English. In terms of circulation also, Marathi dailies have edge over newspapers published in the rest of 22 official languages of India, besides English. Circulation of Marathi dailies in 2005-06 was recorded at 1,05,37,174, which was next only to dailies in the state of Uttar Pradesh (1,34,92,557 copies) as per the data with the Registrar of Newspapers for India.

                             Among the top Marathi newspapers in Maharashtra is Maharashtra Times belonging to the multi-product multi-edition multi-centre media house of the Bennette Coleman Ltd with The Times of India as its flagship. It is published from the company's headquarters in Mumbai. Loksatta belongs to a similar media house, The Indian Express Group, and is published at its headquarters in Mumbai besides other centres Pune, Ahmednagar, Nagpur, Aurangabad, and Delhi.

                              Mumbai as publishing centre: Until a few years ago, Mumbai was Maharashtra's main centre for the Press in English and Marathi. Although Pune, Nagpur and other towns did have dailies, Mumbai's newspapers had a certain aura about them. The Mumbai press and to a lesser extent Pune's dailies enjoyed status among the elite readers, advertisers and newsmakers among politicians and officials in urban and rural Maharashtra. The newspapers outside these two centres were treated by the so-called elite national press, with apparent derision, as 'district' dailies and their staff as 'mofussil' (rural) journalists.

There were some journals earlier but Andhra Patrika, started as a periodical in Bombay in 1908 soon became popular because the founder, P. K. Nageswara Rao Pantulu, himself an eminent scholar, sent copies free to libraries and reading rooms all over Andhra. The contents of the periodical reflect the history of Telugu during the 20th century. The Patrika was shifted to Madras in 1914 and became a daily. On Nageswara Rao's death in 1938, his son-in-law, Sambu Prasad, took over. In 1965 it was again shifted to Vijayawada. The paper was dominant in spreading Gandhiji's ideals in the nooks and corners of Andhra. The memory of Andhra Patrika remains a matter of pride to Telugus.

Apart from nationalist ideals, one other subject that occupied the attention of the founders of Telugu newspapers was the style of the language. There were simple styles as in Vemana's verses or the Sumathi Satakam. Even Pothana's Bhaghavatham can be said to be in a simple style of Telugu, compared to poets like Nannaya, or Srinatha. But grammarians, especially during the 19th century, locked up the language in an ununderstandable literary straight jacket that caused a large-scale revolt in the early 20th century. The most notable of the scholars who led this movement were Gurjada Apparao and Gidugu Ramamurthi. Their main rival was the Parishat Patrika, in which such eminent scholars as Jayanti Ramayya Pantulu, Veeresalingam, Vedam Venkatraya Sastri and others stoutly opposed what they felt was debasing the language in the name of simplification. Their fears to some extent have been justified by the success of the votaries of ``as we speak we write''. Some sort of poetic justice can be seen in the writings of these people which, submerged in an ocean of colloquialism, make little sense to Telugu readers themselves and can be understood only if translated into better Telugu or even into English. There have been many other newspapers and periodicals that came to prominence in the first half of the 20th century. Some of these are - Krishna Patrika, Golconda Patrika, Andhra Prabha, Andhra Sahitya Parishat Patrika, and Bharathi (monthly). Nearly a hundred names are to be found in the list of the newspapers and periodicals of the 20th century.


The whole Orissa heralded a new era of journalism with the introduction of a handwritten newspaper called 'Kujibar Patra' edited by Sadhu Sunder Das, a social reformer of that time in 1769. The same newspaper had irregular frequency (sometimes daily, weekly, and fortnightly) was being published from Kujibar Ashram near Chowdwar. Since the printing machine was not available in Orissa, it was written on coarse paper in Oriya language and distributed in different central places of bazaars, the missionary centres and mission homes of Cuttack town and to the rulers and disciples. This hand-written newspaper had such a great influence on the then missionary activities that the missionaries were translating the news items and sending to London and those were published and commented in London Baptist Missionary Reports and Journals. Rev. A. Sutton had a remarkable piece of translation from the 'Kujibar Patra' in 1927 which was sent to the Baptist Mission in London. It is believed that some copies of Kujibar Patra is at present available at India House Library in London.
In 1869 late Bhagavati Charan Das started 'Utkal Subhakari' to propagate Brahmo faith. Another weekly paper 'Sambad Vahika' was published from Balasore in 1868. The Utkal Society of Cuttack published 'Utkal Hiteisini' in 1869. In the last three and half decades of the 19th century a number of newspapers were published in Oriya, prominent among them were 'Utkal Deepika' 'Utkal Patra' Utkal Hiteisini from Cuttack, Utkal Darpan and Sambada Vahika' from Balasore, Sambalpur Hiteisini (30th May, 1889) from Deogarh. The last named Oriya weekly continued for 34 years under the patronage of Sir Sudhal Deb, Raja of Bamra. In 1879 an Oriya fortnightly newspaper called "Mayurbhanj Pakshika Patrika" was published from Baripada being edited by Haraprasad Das with the financial help of Maharaja Krushna Chandra Bhanja Deo.
In the time of Swadeshi Movement another paper named 'Nava Sambad' also appeared from Balasore. Both 'Nava Sambad' of Balasore and 'Utkal Deepika' of Cuttack gave strong support to the 'Swadeshi' movement and in their writings of 30th August 1905 and 2nd September 1905 respectively those two papers expressed the views that the Swadeshi movement would give impetus to the production of "Swadeshi" goods in Orissa. Pandit Nilamani Vidyaratna a veteran journalist, social reformer and a political leader started an Oriya weekly paper 'Praja Bandhu' from Ganjam to espouse the cause of the Oriyas and the amalgamation movement. He also joined the 'Sambalpur Hiteisini' in the last decade of ninteenth century and gave a new fillip to the cause of amalgamation movement and development of Oriya literature with the help of the Raja of Bamra, the great lover of culture and literature. Pandit Vidyaratna had encouraged the great poet Gangadhar Meher and Radhanath Ray by publishing their literary works through the columns of the paper which he edited.
In 1913 a new phase of journalism began in Orissa under the leadership of Mr. Sashibhusan Rath. On 13th April, 1913 he published the weekly 'Asha' which soon held the public opinion of the district under its influence. Though, Mr. Rath started his weekly without any capital money, he was able to attract the support of the stalwarts of that period like Pandit Gopabandhu Das, Pandit Nilakantha Das, Pandit Godavarish Mishra, the great freedom fighters and scholars, who later became editors of powerful newspapers. Pandit Gopabandhu, the founder of Orissa's influential Oriya newspaper, the Samaj published his first monthly magazine "Satyavadi" from Asha Press of Berhampur. During this period the publication of 'Asha' by Sashi Bhusan had kindled new hopes in the minds of the people of Orissa. 'Asha' soon attracted many leading writers and leaders of public opinion of that time and became the powerful vehicle of public opinion.

During the time of Second World War in 1942, Daily Asha changed hands with its sister publication the English daily 'New Orissa' which was purchased by a businessman of Calcutta, Mr. M.L. Jajodia who later settled down at Cuttack. These two papers gave effective support to war efforts of the British Government and were also recipients of Government's aid. Both were closed down in 1951 marking the end of a great chapter of the pre-independence era journalism in Orissa. However, the "Dainik Asha" resumed publication from Berhampur being controlled by a "Trust" set up by late Brindavan Nayak in the Seventies.
"Samaj", the Oriya Daily of Cuttack now edited by Madam Manorama Mahapatra was founded by late Pandit Gopabandhu Das as a weekly in 1919 to support the cause of freedom struggle of the country. Pandit Das continued his relentless struggle against the British rulers through the columns of the paper and never yielded to any pressure and temptations of the British Government. In 1931 it was made daily by Pandit Nilakantha Das, Pt. Godavarish Mishra, Pt. Lingaraj Mishra and others. But Pandit Gopabandhu was not there to see this eventful beginning of the new life of "Samaj".

During the world war Pandit Nilakantha started an Oriya daily called "Navarat" to support the Ministry and the war efforts of the government. He was also having a monthly magazine 'Nava Bharat'. This paper continued as long as it enjoyed official support and after the fall of the Ministry and the end of war it closed down. During this period another Oriya paper named 'Lok Mata' also came into existence, but it disappeared after a short period.
In the early pre-independence period two English weeklies, 'The Orissa First' edited by Mr. K.N. Acharya and 'Observer' by Mr. M.S. Mahanty, and an Oriya Weekly named Janata by Surendra Mohanty published from Cuttack had influenced public opinions in their own respective ways. Mr. K.N. Acharya's 'Orissa First ' commanded respect and prestige in official and enlightened circles of the State. Another Oriya monthly magazine which commanded great influence through out the State for its critical writings was 'Niakhunta'. This was first started in 1938 from Berhampur by late Godavarish Mahapatra and later shifted to Cuttack. 'Krusak', another Oriya weekly also started its publication in 1938 from Cuttack under editorship of Sarangdhar Das.

                          The first Tamil newspaper in the world named “Morning star” was published in Jaffna in 1841. Mr. Henry Martin as its editor became the first native journalist in Sri Lanka. “Eelakesari” a Tamil weekly published in Jaffna between 1931-1956 period had subscribers in India, Malaysia, South Africa, Fiji and Mauritius where there are sizable Tamil population. ” A newspaper called “Theeppori” published from Jaffna was banned by the government in 1956 period for apparently criticising the government and the Catholic Church.



                 1846 - First Assamese newspaper Arunoday  Sunrise   in 1846 AD. Emerging from Good Friday service, Pastor Aziz-up-Haq described the order as an attack on religious minorities and said it had come at a time when the Centre was talking about Minority welfare. Nathan Brown, a Christian missionary from Britain, is the founder editor of the first newspaper of Assam.

Deepika has an illustrious history of over a century. It was first published by a Syrian Christian priest, Nidhirikkal Manikkathanar, or Father Emmanuel Nidhiri, or Nidhiry Mani Kathanar, under the masthead Nazrani Deepika. (Nazrani in Malayalam means a follower of Jesus, the Nazraene). The first issue came out on 1887 April 15, which coincided with Vishu (the spring equinox festival according to Kerala tradition). The word "Deepika" in Malayalam means "lamp." Printing was on a crude handmade wooden press.
As its first name denotes, Deepika began as a paper of Syro Malabar Nasranis or Catholics of Kerala's Syrin tradition. For many years it was run by Carmelites of Mary Immaculate (CMI), a religious order within the Roman Catholic Church. In 1989 its control was transferred to a Public Limited Company, "Rashtra Deepika Ltd"

Malayala Manorama is a widely read Malayalam daily with a very strong readership in Kerala, India.The core readership is however the members of the christian community.. The Manorama group, which manages the newspaper, also runs the Manorama Yearbook, largest circulated yearbook in the region. Malayala Manorama, which first appeared on 14 March 1890, as a weekly, currently has a readership of over 16 million, with a circulation base of over 1,8 million copies. A joint stock publishing company, destined to acquire the status of the first joint stock publishing company of Republic of India, was incorporated by in 1888 by Kandathil Varghese Mappillai at Kottayam, then a small town in the Kingdom of Travancore, currently, a part of Kerala state, India. The first issue of Malayala Manorama was published on 22 March 1890 from the press owned by Malankara Metropolitan H.G. Joseph Mar Dionysius of the Orthodox Church. The name Malayala Manorama was chosen by the poet, Raghavan Nambiar, Villuvarvattathu from Tiruvalla. Kerala Varma granted the symbol which is a part of the Travancore kingdom symbol. In a period of two years, from the date of incorporation until the publication commenced, the company witnessed several challenges.


                     In 1947, the major English newspaper in India were the Times of India (Bombay), Statesman (Calcutta), Hindu (Madras), Hindustan Times (New Delhi), Pioneer (Lucknow), Indian Express (Bombay & Madras) Amrita Bazaar Patrika (Calcutta), National Herald (Lucknow), Mail (Madras) & Hitavada (Nagpur). Of these, the Times of India, Statesman & Pioneer were under British ownership till 1964, when it came under a group of Indian business.

                   During the long struggle for India’s Independence, the major English newspaper that served the national cause were the Hindu (1878), Amrita Bazaar Patrika (1868), Bombay Chronicle (1913), Free Press Journal (1930, it became Indian Express) & Hindustan Times (1924). Among the Indian language newspapers, the prominent ones were Aaj (1920), Ananda bazaar Patrika (1922), Sakal (1931), Swadeshamitran (1882), Mumbai Smachar (1822), Malayala Manorama (1890) & Mathrubhumi (1930).

                     Generally speaking, journalism is flourishing in India today. The Indian language newspapers have overtaken the English newspapers in number & circulation. The highest circulation till the 1990’s was enjoyed by the English newspapers despite the fact that less than 5 percent of the population of India claim English as their mother tongue. English is still the medium of instruction in colleges & many prominent schools. It is also the language of administration, although state governments have introduced legislation in favor of local government.
                        Certain trends in communication & journalism throughout the modern world prompted several sociologists & media experts to discuss the desirability of re-examining the trends in the light of basic issues. In other words, ‘back to the basics’ say the experts. This is where Gandhi becomes relevant. High technology is good, but if it does not enable us to solve basic problems confronting the succeed in catering to the greed of a few to the exclusion of the need of the many-as it has done through the recent decades and in all countries that experienced colonial subjugation in the past.

The period between 1975 -1977, when Indira Gandhi had declared independence was the most trying period for journalism. As emergency superseded the right to the freedom of speech and expression, most newspapers had to shut down. For the first time since the British Raj, the basic fundamental right of being able to express ones views and ideas was decimated. For the first time since the independence, the Government of India was highly criticised and many newspapers started flourishing in the underground. One of the newspapers that refused to bow down to the pressures applied by the government was  The Indian Express.
But all forms of popular media bowed down to the Congress government for nineteen whole months that when the emergency was finally lifted, it felt like a breath of fresh air.


                            With the emergence of the television and the new media (internet), it can be argued that newspapers are becoming irrelevant in terms of providing the latest news. However, many newspapers in India and the world to some extent have started providing analysis of the news as well. The coverage of the 2009 General Elections is the proof of that. Most newspapers had their own supplements dedicated to the elections and they scrutinised every detail of the elections in a way the television channels cannot provide. As of 2000, there are at least 41,705 newspapers in India and growing every day. The media whilst flawed is one of the most precious commodities in any democracy and as India celebrates another year of its emancipation, the media has a lot to celebrate as well – everyday for millions all over the country it makes this independence count substantial instead of some word uttered as a cliché at some cocktail party.


  1. Sir very nice article. Quite comprehensive and informative.

    I am trying to obtain Front page or masthead specimens of "The Englishman, Calcutta", "Morning Post", "Swadeshi Mitran" etc...
    Kindly advise.

    Thanks and regards.

  2. Sir, its not 'Amnodaya' but 'Orunodoi' or ''Arunodoi' (Assamese: অৰু্ণোদই, English: Sunrise) is the first Assamese-language magazine published from Sibsagar, Assam, in 1846.

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  5. First hindi newspaper was Udant Martand published by Pt. jugal Kishore Shukla in Bengal and not the one you have mentioned

  6. This foolish person should have mention few lines about the URDU journalism. Keeping it out proves his narrow mindedness and prejudice regarding the said language and its readers

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