On This Day in History: May 30, 1826 – The first Hindi language newspaper ‘Udant Martand’ was published

On this day, May 30, in the year 1826, the first Hindi language newspaper ‘Udant Martand’ (The Rising Sun) was published in India. The weekly newspaper was published every Tuesday from Kolkata by Pt. Jugal Kishore Shukla.

Shukla was a lawyer by profession originally from Kanpur. He had settled in Kolkata. On February 16, 1826, Shukla and his friend Munnu Thakur received a license to publish a newspaper in Hindi. Thus, the newspaper was started on May 30, 1826 and was the first newspaper to be completely published in Hindi, using Devanagari script. ‘Udant Martand’ used a mixture of Khari Boli and Braj Bhasha dialects of Hindi in its editions. Around 500 copies were printed on the first issue. The office of the newspaper was situated at Kolkata.

The newspaper had difficulty in finding subscribers due to its distance from the Hindi-speaking areas of the North India and higher postal rates. The publication expected some funding from the government but it did not come through. The publication went into financial crisis and was finally closed on December 4, 1827. Many years later in 1850, Shukla started a magazine titled ‘Samdand Martand’, which ran till 1929.

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