Interstate conflicts are an integral part of the 21st century. The previous century was dominated by two world wars which were extremely violent and the repercussions of which the world is facing even today. It becomes essential to the study the different dynamics of interstate conflicts in order to expedite the processes of conflict management and resolution. There are different actors in a conflict environment and mass media is an important one among them. It is through mass media that conflicts are communicated to citizens. Mass media influences the citizen’s impression and image of the other i.e. the enemy in question. Proliferation of mass media technology has resulted into mediates conflicts. Conflict is continuously hammered upon the audience by various forms of media and hence the need to critically examine the various aspects of media’s role in conflict. This study deals with the most crucial conflict in South Asia i.e. of India-Pakistan. This conflict has shaped the political and economic situation in the sub-continent. Mass media’s role in the India-Pakistan conflict has been much debated by scholars and media n professionals alike. What has not been explored is the possibility of Peace Journalism as opposed to mainstream War Journalism between the two countries. For this very purpose, the researcher has selected a Peace Journalism campaign named Aman Ki Asha (Hope for Peace). The campaign was launched on January 1st, 2010 by The Times of India (India) and The Jang Group (Pakistan) leading media houses of the respective countries. The campaign intends to create an enabling environment by facilitating dialogue between the two governments, encouraging people-to-people contact, thereby contributing to peace between the two countries. The initiative is the first of its kind by print media in the sub-continent. It seeks to satisfy its quest for peace by discussion on all contentious issues between the two countries through mediums like seminars, conferences, cultural festivals and all other forums of people to people contact. The campaign has also committed itself to positive use of print media to promote the benefits of peace and give space to each others point of view on issues of dispute. So far, Aman Ki Asha has organized literary and music fests, editors conferences, trade conferences and strategic seminars to realize its vision. Peace Journalism in the context of India and Pakistan assumes much importance because media in both the nations have been vehicles to spread hate and animosity. Dissemination of stereotyped images and conventional messages has been at the forefront of media activity in India and Pakistan. During the Kargil War (1999), media contributed to building up of the war hysteria. Thus, media has essayed a by and large negative role when it comes to promoting peace between the two neighbors. Looking at the above mentioned arguments, Aman Ki Asha offers a different perspective on what kind of role can be played by the media in the course of India-Pakistan conflict. It is a Peace Journalism venture launched for the first time in the media history of the two nations. Its critical examination can offer insights into the workings of the Peace Journalism model in current and conflicting times. Moreover, it comes at a time when there looms a constant threat about a nuclear zed conflict in South Asia. Hence, the campaign has been chosen for the study.
Use war as a metaphor for disease one which needs cure Incorporate the idea that was is a disease that has afflicted the people of both countries Peace has been used as a metaphor for a healthy state of mind and body. Healthy and progressive relations between India-Pakistan can be established through peace. Intricate connections between war-disease and peace-health have been affirmed by all the articles under this theme. Cooperating on health issues is seen as a possibility of widening dialogue among citizens of both countries....
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University of Queensland
2 http://amankiasha.com/faqs.asp Accessed on February 23, 2012
3 Chattarji, S
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