The Impact of Journalism in Indian English

H.L. Narayanrao


India is the second largest democracy in the world,  having been recognized the Press as the Fourth Estate. The Press/journalism means writing, informing the current issues and incidents of present and the past. The general  practice of investigating and reporting of events, happenings and trends to a broad audience. Though there are many variations of journalism, the ideal is to inform the citizenry. Along with covering organizations and institutions such as government and business, journalism also covers  the sports, cultural aspects of society such as arts, films and entertainment. The field  includes editing, reporting,  photojournalism,  documentary as well as copy writing and copy editing. The first printing press arrived in India in the year 1556, through the efforts of Jesuit missionaries. It was brought from Portugal and installed at the college of St. Paul in Goa. It was used mainly for printing religious literature like tracts, hymn books etc.

The first printed newspaper of India was in English, and was called Hicky’s Bengal Gazette. It was edited and published by James Augustus Hicky, an ex-employee of the East India Company. The first issue of this newspaper came out in 1780 and carried only classified advertisements on its front page. It was a weekly newspaper and generally dealt with the arrival and departure of Europeans, timings of steamers, fashionable news from London, Paris and Vienna, and personal news. It attended to the needs of the small European community of Calcutta. Many other Anglo-Indian newspapers emerged after Hicky’s pattern- such as John Bull, Calcutta Journal, Bengal Harkaru. In the year 1781, Hicky’s Bengal Gazette was forced to close down after Hicky published a scandalous story about Warren Hastings, the then Governor-General of India.

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