chapter  14
14 Pages

Traditions of Public Journalism in India

ByPRADIP THOMAS

When we launched Tehelka in 2000 we made some immodest claims. We said we wanted to rediscover the distinction between journalism, public relations, and entertainment-a distinction that had been blurred in the 1990s by a combination of satellite television, colour pages in the newspapers, and the fi rst giddiness of liberal consumerism. And also by the co-options of politics and business; by the end of the 90s every senior journalist, every publication, could be identifi ed with a political party or a business house. We said we too loved trivia, we too had friends among politicians and businessmen, but we believed that the core of journalism was a very serious one. It was built on the bedrock of uncomfortable questions, not comfortable alignments, nor pretty sentences or pretty pictures (Tejpal 2003: 125, emphasis added).