Karnataka publishers come up with book gifting options during lockdown

While Manohar Granthamala has begun a “Pustaka Udugore” (book gift) scheme, Ladai Prakashana is doing the same with a different approach

Publishers of Kannada books, who are finding the going tough amidst the pandemic like many other sectors, have started special schemes to encourage people to buy books and read.

Two North Karnataka-based publishers, Manohara Granthamala and Ladai Prakashana, have come up two distinct schemes.

Dharwad-based Manohar Granthamala, which has to its credit the publication of all the works of Jnanpeeth awardee Girish Karnad, has begun a "Pustaka Udugore" (book gift) scheme.

“We launched this initiative with the objective of making students develop reading skills especially during the lockdown which has disturbed the whole education system. We want parents to gift their children books or donate books to anyone," says Manager of Manohar Granthmala Sameer Joshi.

The oldest publishing house of Dharwad, it has "gift packages." In all there are six packages comprising of six to nine books each and the readers can choose from them, depending on their interest. They comprise of works of different literary forms.

On Ambedkar

Gadag-based Ladai Prakashana is doing the same with a different approach. It has collection of books on Baba Saheb Ambedkar and women’s literature and other social issues.

“The collection on Baba Saheb comprises of 22 books. We have sent out 150 sets already,” Basavaraj Sulebhavi, publisher of Ladai Prakashana. According to Mr. Sulebhavi, also an activist, a good sign is that of increased reading of Ambedkar particularly among dalit and progressive youths. Some of buyers of these books have added them to their personal libraries and lend them to youths interested in reading.

Both the publishers have received good response for their initiative and they want to come up with more packages depending on the demand.

M.A. Subramanya, proprietor of the oldest publishing house of Hubballi, Sahitya Prakashana, is busy during lockdown as online requests keep coming. He says publishers get an average of 30 online requests per day, indicative of the increased reading habit during lockdown.

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