US embassy cables released by WikiLeaks have made a huge impact in India. The Hindu began running stories based on the cables on 15 March, resulting in 21 front page scoops.
The government has been rocked by some of the revelations, with calls for the prime minister, Manmohan Singh, to resign.
This followed disclosures about the alleged bribery of MPs during the July 2008 confidence vote, which the government survived by a slim majority.
The Hindu's editor-in-chief, N. Ram, says: "The cables we have worked on so far expose the venal and sordid underbelly of India, which is corrupt, non-transparent, and vulnerable to manipulation by the big powers, in particular the United States."
Last week, Ram interviewed WikiLeaks co-founder Julian Assange at the house in Norfolk where he is staying while on bail fighting extradition to Sweden and asked him how the coverage of the embassy cables in India compared with the impact of the original revelations in November last year in western newspapers.
Assange replied: "I am very encouraged by what's happened in India... there's a spectrum of publishing in India which I think eclipses that of The Guardian, Le Monde, Der Spiegel and the New York Times, and El Pais, which were our original partners, although some of them had also done some very fine work." He continued:
"This is something we have seen with some of our other regional partners in Latin America, like Peru and Costa Rica coming up before elections — that the local focus is able to really burrow into important details.
I am tempted to say, based upon my reading of The Hindu that it is in a position to report more freely than these other papers are in their respective countries.
That may be, I suspect, not just as a result of the strength of The Hindu but as a result of the weakness of the Indian federal government as a structure that is able to pull together patronage networks and suppress journalism as a whole in India.
While it's certainly true that each one of the factions involved in Indian national politics is able to exert pressures, I think it is encouraging that India as a whole has not turned into one central pyramid of patronage, which is something we do see a bit in other countries like the United States."