The newspaper industry is growing at a fast pace in India, and for them following the set regulations becomes important for example: having a verified title. The Office of Registrar of Newspapers for India is an authority that verifies Neswapaper Title. To get the title, the publisher must follow an online procedure and submit the required documents by following the guidelines. 

What is RNI? 

The full form of RNI is Registrar of Newspapers. The First Press Commission in 1953 suggested RNI and then on July 1st, 1956, it came into existence. All the amendments related to this are mentioned in the Press and Registration of Books Act, of 1867. The RNI only registers the newspapers and periodicals as defined under Section 1 of the RNI Act and does not entitle the following applicants: 

  • News Agencies, Feature Agencies, News Websites, and News Channels 
  • Electronic versions of publications including Title option using words such as dot com, dot in, blog, portal, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Youtube, Wikipedia, Orkut, etc. 

What are the Functions of RNI? 

In the Press and Registration of Books Act, all the functions of RNI are stated. And, every year more new responsibilities are added to the list. So, now the office is performing both the statutory and non-statutory functions. 

Statutory Functions 

  • Compilation and maintenance of records of published newspapers. 
  • Issue a certificate of registration to the valid title newspaper. 
  • Scrutiny and analysis of annual statements. 
  • Informing District Magistrates about the availability of titles. 
  • Make sure that newspapers are published as per the provision of the PRB Act 1867. 
  • Submitting a report each year before the 31st of December to the Government about the information and statistics of the Indian press. 

Non-Statutory Functions 

  • Creating guidelines for a newsprint allocation policy and issuing an Eligibility Certificate to the newspapers. 
  • Providing certificates for the needs of newspaper establishments to import and compose machinery and allied materials. 

Guidelines Set by RNI for Title Verification 

The newspaper publisher or the owner must apply for the title verification to the authority. And, this application must be sent to the RNI within 180 days from the date of title verification. In case, the applicant does not apply to register the title, the title will blocked and made available for other newspapers. Now anyone can use this title.  

Similarly, if during the application process any issue occurs, then a Discrepancy letter is issued. The publisher or the owner has to reply to this letter within 30 days otherwise the application will be rejected. 

Note: The verification of the title, doesn’t mean that it is trademark registered or become a brand or company name. It only means that newspapers are registered with the Registrar of Newspapers under the PRB Act, of 1867. However, apply to relevant authorities for completing the registration of the mark, Brand Name, or other important approval.  

Documents Required for Title Verification

  • After receiving the RNI Title Verification Letter from the Press Registrar, the printer/publisher has to make a declaration before the Magistrate. The Declaration is to be made in Form I as given in the Schedule to the Registration of Newspapers (Central) Rules, 1956. Copies of the form will be available with the Magistrate
  • If the printer and the publisher are different or the place of publication and printing come under the jurisdiction of two different magistrates, separate declarations should be made before the Magistrate(s).
  • The Magistrate will either authenticate the declaration or issue an order refusing to authenticate it, as the case may be.
  • A copy of each of the authenticated declarations will be sent by the Magistrate with his/her attestation to the person(s) who made the declaration and to the Press Registrar.

Must read: How to register a magazine in India?

Documents Required for Fresh , Revised and Duplicate RNI Certificate Registration

Below, you’ll find a tabulated list of all the necessary documents for RNI Fresh, Revised, and Duplicate Certificate Registration

Fresh Registration

Revised Registration

Duplicate Certificate 

A copy of the title verification letter issued by RNI. Original certificate of registration issued by RNI.A notarized affidavit for loss of original RNI certificate of registration.  
Declaration (Form-1) filed by the Publisher and duly authenticated by DM/DC/SDM/JCP/CMM.New Declaration (Form-1) filed by the Publisher specifying clear reason for filing the same at a relevant column and duly authenticated by DM/DC/SDM/JCP/CMM.An IPO of Rs.5/-  
A written agreement between the owner of periodical and keeper of printing press for printing the periodical, bearing signatures & designation of both the parties. A written agreement between the owner of a periodical and the keeper of the printing press for printing the periodical, bearing signatures & designation of both parties.A copy of the authenticated declaration based on which the newspaper/periodical got registered.  
A copy of the first issue (i.e. volume 1, issue 1) brought out after authentication of declaration by DM/DC/SDM/JCP/CMM.A copy of the issue is brought out immediately after authentication of the declaration whichever is the latest.Penalty of `1000.00 per year, in the form of demand draft in favour of DDO, RNI against non-submission of annual statements.  
An authorization in writing from owner(s), authorizing individual (by name) to make and subscribe declaration as publisher/printer, in the case where the publisher or printer making a declaration is not the owner thereof.An authorization in writing from the owner, authorizing an individual (by name) to make and subscribe declaration as publisher/printer, in the case where the publisher or printer making a declaration is not the owner thereof.A copy of the latest issue.

Transfer/change an ownership of registered newspaper

The following steps are involved in transferring or changing the registered newspaper’s ownership:

  • As a first step, the owner of the newspaper needs to provide an affidavit for the transfer of ownership to the concerned District Magistrate (DM) in his region. 
  • Along with the affidavit, a declaration for registration and other relevant documents required by the DM must also be submitted.
  • In this case, the RNI office will only act on the original declaration from the office of DM. Direct submissions will not be accepted by RNI.

How to Check the RNI Title Registration Status?

An RNI title check is important before applying for the title and it is important to ensure that it is verified in the name of the owner only. However, the application should include the mobile and email address of the applicant, which will enable RNI to communicate the RNI title application status through SMS and email. 

In case, the application is forwarded through a concerned authority such as DM, DC, SDM, DCP, JCP, CMM, etc., it should bear the legit name, signature, and seal of the forwarding authority, along with the date and reference number. 

Once the application is received by RNI, an SMS and email are sent to the applicant conveying the application number. And, after the application is processed, another SMS and email are sent, conveying the status of the application.

To check the title registration status, the applicant can use the application number and visit the RNI website, clicking on the “Title Application Status/Letter Download” tab. The title verification letter, title non-approval letter, or discrepancy letter can also be downloaded from the RNI website. 


The Title verification process is simple but requires some steps to be followed. It is important to ensure that you get the verification within the prescribed time without getting a discrepancy letter. So, it is advisable to get a consultation from experts. To read more informative content about the verification process, documents, and registered and cancelled titles, check RegistrationKraft. Here you will get the right information in an easy and understandable manner.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Q1. Once the title of the newspaper is verified by RNI, what is the stipulated period for the registration of the title with RNI?

The publisher must submit the registration application within 6 months from the date of title verification. If the registration for a verified title is not received within this time period, the verified title will be made accessible to others.

Q2. What happens in case an application is not submitted for a verified title within the 6 months time limit?

In such a case, the verified title will be made available to other users.

Q3. Does the RNI registration/certificate need to be renewed on an annual basis?

No, the RNI registration/certificate comes with a lifetime validity and does not need any renewal. However, in case of any changes in the registration details, the publisher must apply for a registration.

By Kashish

Content writer with a diverse portfolio spanning various subjects. With a seasoned background, I have been crafting professional content since 2019.

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