The Times of India (TOI) is an Indian English-language daily newspaper and digital news media owned by The Times Group. It is the third-largest newspaper in India and the largest-selling English-language daily in the world. It has been published since 1838, and is nicknamed “The Old Lady of Bori Bunder”.
It is one of the world’s best newspapers and is owned by Bennett, Coleman & Co. Ltd. It is the most trusted English newspaper in India according to the Brand Trust Report India 2019. However, it has been criticized for accepting payments from persons and entities in exchange for positive coverage.
The Times of India was first published in 1838 as The Bombay Times and the Journal of Commerce. It began to publish daily editions in 1850, and Robert Knight bought the Indian shareholders’ interests in 1860. He changed the name to The Times of India and fought for a press free from restraint or intimidation. This newspaper company employed more than 800 people and had a large circulation across India and Europe in the 19th century.
Ramkrishna Dalmia bought Bennett Coleman & Co. Ltd for ₹20 million in 1946. In 1955, he was found guilty of embezzlement and fraud and sentenced to two years in Tihar Jail. Upon his release, his son-in-law refused to let him resume command of the company.
In the early 1960s, Shanti Prasad Jain of the Jain family was charged with selling newsprint on the black market. The Vivian Bose Commission found wrongdoings of the Dalmia-Jain group, which included specific charges against Shanti Prasad Jain. As a result, the Government of India assumed control of Bennett, Coleman, and Company and replaced half of its directors.
In 1969, the Bombay High Court passed an order to disband the existing board of Bennett, Coleman & Co and appoint a new board under the Government of India. The court appointed D K Kunte as chairman of the board, who had no prior business experience. Shanti Prasad Jain ceased to be a director and the company ran with new directors appointed by the Government of India.
In 1976, the Government of India transferred the ownership of a newspaper back to Ashok Kumar Jain, son of Sahu Shanti Prasad Jain and grandson of Ramkrishna Dalmia. Ashok Kumar Jain was the father of the current owners Samir Jain and Vineet Jain. In 1998, he fled the country due to allegations of money laundering involving illegal transfer of funds to an overseas account in Switzerland.
The day after India declared a state of emergency, the Bombay edition of TOI carried an obituary for “D.E.M. O’Cracy”. This was a critique of Prime Minister Indira Gandhi’s 21-month state of emergency, which is now known as “the Emergency” and seen as an authoritarian era of the Indian government.
The Times Group acquired Vijayanand Printers Limited in late 2006. This company published two Kannada newspapers, an English daily, and also launched a Chennai and Kolhapur edition in 2008 and 2013 respectively.
The TOIFA Awards were introduced in 2013 and are awarded for outstanding work in the Film Industry. They are decided by a global public vote on nominated categories.
The Times of India (TOI) is a newspaper published by the media group Bennett, Coleman & Co. Ltd. TOI has editions in major cities across India, such as Mumbai, Agra, Ahmedabad and Delhi. The Times Group also publishes other newspapers like Ahmedabad Mirror, Bangalore Mirror and Economic Times.
The Times of India has been criticized for the practice of paid news, where politicians, businessmen, corporations, and celebrities can pay the newspaper for positive coverage. This practice has since been adopted by other major media groups in India. Critics state that this blurs the lines between content and advertising and skews coverage to shield advertisers from scrutiny. TOI’s managing director insists that there is a wall between sales and the newsroom, but critics argue otherwise.