Talking about the origin of public relation in India, the first legal PR body, The Public Relations Society of India was formed in Mumbai in 1958. Since then, the profession has been growing and it gained speed in the early 1990s. Not much specification has been given in terms of the origin of public relation as a concept but many believe that it has been existing since the mythological times. Mahabharata and Ramayana are the epic Hindu mythologies which show the existence of strategic communication and origin of public relation practices time and again.
So what does a PR professional do? and How do you related it to the mythological era?
The first question could be answered in various ways like, they enhance the reputation of their client, act as a liaison between an organization and its stakeholders, act as the voice of a brand, maintain media relations, handle crisis situations, etc. PR professional does all these and more.
To answer the second question, the basic plot of Mahabharata and Ramayana is commonly known in India, but you may miss out on the communication strategies and stunts used in the epic narration that clearly show creative PR activities.
He is an Indian god who played a major role in Mahabharata and manipulated the war by just using his brain and words. His unique approach towards people and his convincing power to make them take decisions in his favour made him the most prominent character in the epic.
Dhritarashtra’s (the blind king) advisor and charioteer are the best examples of communicators who did PR and negotiations in the war for peace.
He was the first mythological public relation personality mentioned both in Mahabharata and Ramayana. Through his creative tactics, he disseminated rulers, gods, and goddesses with the motive of establishing ‘Lok Kalyan’- the universal peace and prosperity.
Rama’s advisor, acted as a liaison by establishing a link between the king and the public by informing Rama of public thoughts, feelings and perceptions.
Public relation is the key to maintain a connection between an organisation and the public. In mythological language, a PR consultants job is ‘To turn ever Ravana into Ram.’ As long as there is an organisation and the public it caters to, the need for public relation will always be there. The origin of Public relation in India is not clearly specified but it can be said that it is as old as human civilization.
Related article: – What PR Education Today Needs
– Sakshi Jain
Sakshi Jain is a part of Class of 2020 of PG Programme in PR and Corporate Communications at SCoRe, Mumbai. She holds a BA degree in Mass Communication from Prestige Insitiute of Management and Research, Indore. She has done a two month internship with Aim High Consulting, Bengaluru. Her interest in the field of communication and Public Relations comes from her love for reading, writing and meeting new people. She is always keen on learning new things. Apart from that she is in love with food, dance and cinema.
This blog post originally appeared on Sakshi’s Blog Page: