Language Press in India: Differences between English Newspapers and Language News Papers (For CBSE, ICSE, IAS, NET, NRA 2023)

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Definition of Language Newspaper

Language newspapers or regional newspapers are those published in different languages spoken within the country. In India, language papers are published in more than 100 languages. But the main papers are published in 16 languages. They vary from English papers in style, presentation and approach.

Differences between English Newspapers and Language News Papers

English Newspapers and Language News Papers

Roth of Language Newspapers in India

  • At the time of independence India had only 330 daily newspapers. From there till now, there has been a 12-fold increase in their number. In 1997, their number was 4719 and as on 2006, there are totally 5600 newspapers. Among that 398 are major newspapers and have a circulation of about 30,772, 000 copies. India has the world՚s largest newspaper market after China. The world՚s three top countries in newspaper circulation are China with 98.70 million copies, India with 88.90 million copies and Japan with 69.10 million.
  • Growth of newspaper is calculated in two terms, circulation and readership. In India, regional newspapers have more readership than English newspapers.

Reasons for Newspaper Boom

India witness boom not only in newspapers, but in other forms of media too. The Medias like TV, radio and internet are also popular in India and growing in an optimum rate. Why there is a boom can be summarised into the following points:

Reasons for Newspaper Boom

Growth of Language Newspapers

  • The reasons for spread of the newspapers are same for the spread of language newspapers. But, besides that there were some of other reasons too. They are,
  • Advancement of rural mass economically and educationally resulted in higher demands for the language dailies.
  • Coverage of local news by the newspapers. Newspapers started covering stories which affected the daily life of ordinary people.
  • Starting of multiple editions at regional level.
  • The boom in advertisement industry increased the revenue for the dailies.

Studies About the Press in India

Most of the studies on press in India are done on two different periods, colonial period and after independence. Some studies further divide this into pre-emergency period and post-emergency period. The Registrar of Newspapers of India (RNI) , the National Readership Council of India (NRCI) and the Audit Bureau of Circulation (ABC) are some of the organizations which regularly conduct studies on newspapers in India. The Government of India appointed two press commissions and they have also submitted reports on the Indian media. Some research books on Indian press are,

  • Robin Jeffrey՚s “India՚s Newspaper Revolution”
  • S. Natarajan՚s “A History of Press in India”
  • Ronald E Wolsey՚s “Journalism in Modern India”
  • Naresh Khanna՚s “Newspaper Circulations in India, 1998 - 2000”
  • M. Chalapathi Rau՚s “Journalism and Politics”

Diversity of the Language Press

Apart from English language, newspapers are published in India in More than 100 languages. The advent of IT and print media never threatened the newspapers. Even though instant news are available in the internet, people prefer newspaper reading. The print media has responded to the new changes and challenges with its modernization. They have accepted the information technology, which resulted in better coverage with greater speed and affordable price. The readership of newspapers is also growing.

Early Growth Period of Language Newspapers

According to Naresh Khanna, who studied about the trends in circulation of regional language papers, Malayalam, Bengali, Hindi and Marathi languages showed the fastest growth between 1998 and 2000. During the same period, newspapers in Telugu, Urdu, Tamil, Oriya and Kannada languages showed either stagnation or decline. Malayala Manorama, a language daily in Malayalam, started in 1890 became the largest circulated daily in India by 1980s and continued to remain in that position for more than a decade. Today Dainik Jagaran and Dainik Bhaskar are the two largest circulated dailies with a readership of more than 20 million. The National Readership Survey of 2006 revealed that newspaper readership in rural areas has grown so fast that it paralleled the readership in urban areas.