Diplomacy and the News Media: A Comment on the Indian Experience

Ajai K. Rai was Research Fellow at IDSA working on 'National Security and the Indian Media'. He has been associated with the media in different capacities for about 13 years and has worked with The Times of India (Mumbai), India Post, Sunday Observer and the Eenadu Group. He has been on the visiting faculty of the Indian Institute of Mass Communication, New Delhi for the last three years. He was also a Press Fellow at Cambridge University in 1994.
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  • January 2003

    This paper attempts to examine the changing dynamics of the interface between diplomacy and news media with emphasis on the Indian context. American examples, opinions and trends have been taken into consideration to impart a comparative perspective to the paper. It has been carried out in the light of the brief history of diplomatic reporting in India, the linkages and issues involved in the relationship between the Indian Foreign Office and media as well as the role and limitations of television in the formulation and conduct of foreign policy.

    The dominant theme of the paper is that, despite the emerging role of media in diplomacy, the media-diplomacy relationship has been quite uncomfortable over the years.

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