Gita Press: Printing Hinduism for a Century.

Gita Press

Last month, President Ram Nath Kovind, UP CM Yogi Adityanath, and Governor Anandiben Patel joined centenary celebrations of the Gorakhpur-based writer, whose gross sales boomed amid the Covid pandemic.

Lalmani Verma | Indian Express | Gorakhpur | July 3, 2022:: When the Covid-19 pandemic disrupted existence in early 2020, a number of large publishers and printers confronted a disaster as readers an increasing number of shifted on-line to learn books and get admission to find out about fabrics, who prefer their e-readers over hardback editions and paperbacks.

While many publishers strategised alter to this modification that the pandemic had accelerated, a hundred-year-old publishing space founded in Gorakhpur, Uttar Pradesh, recorded a surge in gross sales after the primary wave of the pandemic. Even as different publishers, suffering with monetary losses, had been suffering to ship their books to retail outlets, Gita Press’s publications reached e book stalls in more moderen spaces and expanded its footprint. The writer claims to have offered books value greater than Rs 77 crore within the 2021-’22 monetary 12 months, up from round Rs 52 crore the 12 months earlier than.

This 12 months, Gita Press is in its centenary 12 months and the celebrations will conclude on May 3, 2023. On June 4, President Ram Nath Kovind, Governor Anandiben Patel, and Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath attended an tournament marking the instance. Kovind stated the writer’s position in taking the “spiritual and cultural knowledge of India” to the loads. Apart from the Bhagavad Gita, Kovind mentioned, Gita Press publishes the Ramayana, the Puranas, the Upanishads, the Bhakt Charitra, and different spiritual books. It has the respect of being the arena’s greatest writer of Hindu spiritual books.

President Ram Nath Kovind addressed the centenary celebrations of Gita Press at Gorakhpur lately.

Details: https://t.co/wcybSr7nKu pic.twitter.com/FqBVk1aGk1

— President of India (@rashtrapatibhvn) June 4, 2022

Prez Kovind Tweets of Gita Press Visit

The founding father of Gita Press was once Marwari businessman Jayadayal Goyandka from Churu in Rajasthan who was once founded in Bankura, Bengal, and used to industry in cotton, kerosene oil, textiles, and utensils. An avid reader of the Bhagavad Gita, he shaped teams of buddies within the cities the place he used to trip for industry and those males joined him in spiritual congregations, referred to as satsangs, to talk about the e book. This community of Gita chat groups expanded however all the satsangis discovered that they didn’t have an unique, error-free translation of the Gita together with a loyal statement. In 1922, Goyandka were given the Gita printed by means of Vanik Press in Kolkata however mistakes prevailed. When Goyandka raised the topic with the clicking proprietor, he were given advised off. The press proprietor advised him to arrange his personal press if he needed to peer an error-free translation of the e book. Thus started the adventure of Gita Press.

One of Goyandka’s businessmen buddies from Gorakhpur proposed that the clicking be operated from town in Uttar Pradesh. Ghanshyamdas Jalan additionally introduced to run it. With this, Gita Press got here into being in 1923. While, at this time, books are printed the use of India-made “wave offset” machines and different machines from Germany, Japan, and Italy, the primary books had been printed the use of a treadle device introduced from Boston within the United States.

“He (Goyandka) believed that it (the Gita) was a message of god and he should set up the press,” mentioned Gita Press’s present supervisor Lalmani Tiwari. “He mentioned it with the individuals of satangs. Ghanshyamdas Jalan of Gorakhpur was once a normal player within the satsangs. He introduced that if a press is established in Gorakhpur, he’s going to deal with it. Then it was once determined to search for an area in Gorakhpur for the clicking.”

A small development was once rented for Rs 10 monthly and the use of the device from Boston the gang began printing the Gita on April 29, 1923. In July 1926, some other development, the place the present campus of Gita press is positioned, was once bought for Rs 10,000 . The current campus is unfold over two lakh sq. toes. Since its established order, the newsletter space claims to have revealed greater than 90 crore books. Its flagship per month mag Kalyan has been in circulate for the final 95 years and thus far 16.74 crore copies were revealed. Mahatma Gandhi was once a number of the individuals to the primary factor of Kalyan.

“We started with the Bhagavad Gita. Presently, we are publishing 1,800 titles of books in 15 languages. On average, we are supplying 60,000 books daily. But still, we are not able to meet the demand,” mentioned Tiwari. The Press makes a speciality of the interpretation of the Gita, the Ramayana, the Puranas, the Mahabharata and different books in several languages. It additionally publishes storybooks for youngsters.

Though it publishes books at the “Sanatana Hindu dharma (the eternal religion)”, Gita Press claims to haven’t any affiliation with any political outfit. Asked concerning the newsletter space’s hyperlinks to the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) and the Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP), Tiwari mentioned Gita Press was once related to everybody in society however had no connection to Hindutva politics.

But, writer Akshaya Mukul has written of the publishing space in his e book Gita Press and the making of Hindu India, “It was once a an important cog within the wheel of Hindu nationalism that struck up alliances with everybody: mendicants, liberals, politicians, philanthropists, students, sectarian organizations just like the RSS, Hindu Mahasabha, Jana Sangh and VHP, and conservative parts inside the Congress.”

In the e book, Mukul cites pupil Paul Arney who has referred to as Gita Press the “leading purveyor of print Hinduism in the twentieth century”. Mukul says Arney, in his paintings, cites “a special issue of Hindu Chetna, a VHP publication, which came out in 1992 in honor of Poddar”. The Poddar Arney talks about is Kalyan’s founding editor Hanuman Prasad Poddar.

Mukul is going on to jot down, “The factor carried a 1964 interview of Poddar by means of Shivram Shankar Apte, previous with the RSS and later loaned to the VHP. Poddar, who was once a number of the founders of the VHP, advised Apte that it was once Gita Press that ‘sowed the tolerant beliefs that experience now blossomed into the plant of the Vishwa Hindu Parishad’.”

Asked why Gita Press does now not submit books of different religions, its present supervisor Tiwari deflected by means of announcing, “There is already such a lot paintings in books of Sanatana Dharma that we aren’t in a position to offer as in step with the call for. We have not begun to submit the Vedas and Smriti.”

Kovind isn’t the primary president to consult with the Gita Press Office. Dr Rajendra Prasad inaugurated the primary front of the publishing space and an artwork gallery referred to as Lila Chitra Mandir at its premises in 1955. The gallery depicts the Lilas of Hindu deities Ram and Krishna in 684 art work organized sequentially from start to the top of each and every. The entire Gita is inscribed on marble blocks at the partitions, as are about 700 couplets and verses of exalted saints. Over the years, notable names, together with High Court judges, governors and leader ministers of various states have visited the Press.

Gita Press purposes beneath a non-profit agree with referred to as Gobind Bhavan — it is called after the development in Kolkata’s Bara Bazar house the place the publishing space took form — that doesn’t additionally settle for donations. Gita Press now has 430 staff, 20 gross sales depots, and virtually 2,500 booksellers who acquire its works. At the clicking, the spiritual books as soon as revealed aren’t left at the floor and are put on pallets.

“The Trust may be now not hereditary. There is no person within the Trust from the circle of relatives of the founder. Also, individuals of the Trust aren’t elected. They are decided on and assigned tasks,” Tiwari mentioned.

Asked about experiences that Gita Press was once about to close down a couple of years in the past, Tiwari claimed that was once faux information. “In 2015, fake news was circulated that Gita Press was in a financial crisis. By circulating such reports, some people wanted to collect money as donations in the name of Gita Press,” said Tiwari. “So many people offered donations. But we did not accept. We even had to close our bank account for a few days so that no one could transfer money. Also, at the time, some employees got confused about their salaries and staged a strike for a few days. But that issue was also resolved.”

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Courtesy: Indian Express.

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