Only Sanskrit newspaper struggles to survive

Mysuru: As the country celebrates the World Sanskrit Week to popularise the “language of the gods,” which previous External Affairs Minister, the late Sushma Swaraj, claimed was a modern language fit for computers, the only Sanskrit daily of India, Sudharma, published from Mysuru, is struggling for survival.

Economics apart, the number of patrons of this newspaper, celebrating its 50th anniversary, is dwindling. The management has now sought help from various government agencies which have shown little interest so far.

Sudharma was started by Pandit Varadaraja Iyengar, a Sanskrit scholar, in 1970, to reach out to those who loved the language and were interested in promoting it. These days, his son KV Sampath Kumar and his wife Jayalakshmi are continuing to keep the legacy alive.

The newspaper, an-A3-size, 2-page and 5-column-sheet, has around 3,000 subscribers, mostly institutions and public libraries, who receive the copies by post. The e-version has around a lakh readers.

While newspapers in Hindi and other languages continued to do well, Sudharma, the only Sanskrit daily was finding it hard to keep running, as it seems to have run out of resources.

“That’s because no state or central body comes forward to help us and the response from various organisations in the private sector is indifferent,” according to the editor KV Sampath Kumar.

Jayalakshmi, who is well versed in Hindi, Tamil, Kannada, English and, of course, Sanskrit, believes the latter is a great language.

By Brij Khandelwal

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