Spin-doctoring as a Tool of Political Communication, in the Age of the Internet, in India

Abstract:

At its inception spin-doctoring was mainly used by private corporates to serve their business interests. In the 1980s the political classes began to enthusiastically take up the marketing techniques used by industry; political parties became brands to be managed. And from the 1990s spin-doctoring has come to the fore in political communication as never before in many democracies around the world. Politics in India hasn’t remained untouched by this phenomenon. But the intensity and extent of its use has been conspicuous during and since the General Elections to the Indian parliament in 2014. It is the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and its main leader – Narendra Modi – who has been employing it to a large measure. For this the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) led by BJP has bought over (literally, and through threat and intimidation) a major chunk of corporate media in India. This paper would like to argue that spin-doctoring has become the very core of the political communication of the present ruling dispensation in India and point out its long-term consequences for democracy in India.

 

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