I was not only astonished but rather confused when I tried to find the books by great Hindi poets like Shivmangal Singh Suman and Nirala, Jaishankar Prasad and Subhadra Kumar Chauhan, Mahadevi Varma and Maithilisharan Gupta and many others. The largest store available online doesn’t seem to have books that millions of book lovers might want to read all day. Why? Why doesn’t Amazon sell Hindi literature by the demigods of this field? Why does Amazon sell cheap shayaris and nazms and Ghazals but not the best of the Hindi poets?
My father always presses me for books by classical Hindi authors like Ramavriksha Benipuri, Ayodhya Singh Upadhyay, Aarsi Prasad Singh and many others but I never seem to locate them online on any website, leave aside Amazon. Moreover, whenever I find any of these rarest books, I am complaining, Rajkamal Prakashan is doing another disservice to the cause of literature by charging too much money and giving us the very basic version of print quality and books, on an overall scale. This is sad!
One that we seem to have forgotten the greats of Hindi literature already and second that we don’t even care to make such books available at a favourable price so that the readers can take more and more interest while keeping in mind their pocket’s warmth. This would be a step that we do need to take if we want to preserve as well as propel the interest for the current generation in the golden period literature in Hindi. Otherwise, if we don’t pay attention to such loopholes, I can foresee a day when readers of traditional and quality Hindi literature will cease to exist… only found in university classrooms. Do we want such a thing to happen? I guess no!
Amazon and Amazon sellers, people trust you for many things. Kindly do something about it. Onboard some of the sellers who are willing to sell quality literature by quality authors and let the readers enjoy this great bonhomie. We want to read. We can not find it. And, at the same time, the government of India must publish the greats of the Hindi literature at a low budget and make those titles available on mass scales so that we don’t have to pay more than what they deserve to Rajkamal and other publications who are further widening the gap between quality literature and a few readers who are left to read such pieces!
by Agraj Mishra