ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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MAHARASHTRA- Learning to Live without Belgaum

does not discuss the 'whys' of a given fact. We are told, for instance, that the rise in circulation between 1965 and 1966 was mainly shared by Bengali (10.1 per cent), Kannada (6 8 per cent), Oriya (5.4 per cent), Malayalam (4.3 per cent), English (3,4 per cent) and Sindhi (3.3 per cent). But why was the rise in circulation of Bengali papers so high? Because more and more younger people are coming into the employment bracket? Because the - political situation in Bengal is such that there is a great deal of genuine curiosity among the people about what is happening? To what extent has the costliness of the radio contributed to the popularity of the written word? Is English out of fashion and is Bengali coming to the fore? We get no help from 'Press in India', Readership Per Thousand Among the various languages, it is stated, Malayalam commanded 41.2 copies per thousand inhabitant readership in 1965, followed by Tamil (21.6), Gujarati (22.9) and Marathi (18.0). Is this a reflection of literacy or per capita income, or a fortuitous combination of both? We are not told. Kerala has a literacy rate of 52.9 per cent, undoubtedly the highest in India, Madras 34.3 per cent, Gujarat 34.9 per cent and Maharashtra 33.8 per cent. This explains a little, but not enough. If per capita income is any guide, Andhra, which is a food surplus State and comparatively rich should have more people buying papers but, then, literacy in Andhra is only 23.3 per cent, which gives Andhra poor returns. In fact, the biggest circulation that any Telugu paper commands is that of Andhra Prabha, published from Vijayawada (70,173 in 1966), which compares poorly indeed with the circulation of the Tamil Thanthi from Madras (1,19,512), or of Dina- mani also from Madras (92,534).

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