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India's independent journalism in doubt in election year

Voters line up in a queue outside a polling booth to cast their vote during the state assembly election in the old quarters of Delhi, 4 December 2013
Voters line up in a queue outside a polling booth to cast their vote during the state assembly election in the old quarters of Delhi, 4 December 2013

REUTERS/Ahmad Masood

With the dawn of the new year, India is looking ahead to a national election in May. Recent developments raise questions about the quality and quantity of independent news coverage of the polls as local media come under greater political influence.

"Compared to many Asian countries, there is a great deal of freedom to report in India," writer and lawyer Suhrith Parthasarathy told CPJ. "But there is the issue of political control of the Indian media which begs the question of how truly free are journalists."

An analysis by The Hoot, a South Asian media watchdog, found that although it is difficult to trace the complex paths of media ownership in India, political parties and individuals with political affiliations own and control increasing sections of the press.

Read the full story on CPJ's site.

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