Ambedkarite Calendar: Nurturing Bahujan Heritage Through Time
In the kaleidoscope of calendars that adorn homes and offices, a unique trend has emerged – the Ambedkarite Calendar, deeply rooted in the rich tapestry of Bahujan history. While Samyak Publications pioneered this trend, others like Prabudh Bharat and Das Publication have followed suit, contributing to a growing movement that seeks to connect the Bahujan with their historical legacy.
Lucknow- The sale of new year calendars spikes in the period approaching the new year, i.e., December and the first month of the New Year, i.e., January. A calendar is a system of organizing and measuring time, used for various purposes, including tracking days, weeks, months, and years, as well as scheduling events and activities. A calendar comes in handy for planning events, holidays, etc.
In India, various establishments and self-employed institutions get calendars published to capitalize on the needs of the people. This way, they can publicize their business, profession, etc. The majority of calendars are single-page calendars. However, organizations with deep pockets also fund multiple-page calendars. Most of these calendars are given away free of cost; in fact, no one expects anyone to buy a calendar.
Calendars have also been used by religious outfits to propagate their particular religion. This calendar is a multi-page calendar, and the days in such a calendar denote the religious significance of a date.
Jai Bhim Calendar: The Calendar that Connects the Bahujans with Their History
The Bahujan Movement has also followed this pattern, and Samyak Prakashan was the first publication to bring such a calendar. Almost every day in the calendar is marked with significant events of Bahujan history. For example, in the calendar of Samyak Publication, the date of 3rd January is marked with the birthday of Savitri Bai Phule in 1831, along with the admission of Dr. Ambedkar to Elphinstone College in 1908, among other events. The unique thing about this calendar is that it is not free of cost, yet it has managed to find takers.
Avadesh Kumar, a staunch Ambedkarite from Unnao, says that he buys at least 20 copies of the Jai Bhim Calendar every year and distributes them to people in his village.
The Idea is to Take Ambedkar to Every Home
The Mooknayak spoke to Sandeep Swaroop Baudh of Samyak Publications. He said, “The idea of publishing a Jai Bhim Calendar struck my father, Late Shanti Swaroop Baudh, the founder of Samyak Publications, as he wanted to take the facts and message of Babasaheb Ambedkar to every house. He said that when they launched the calendar in 2007, they were the first publishers in the Hindi belt to issue an Ambedkarite Calendar; before us, only some Marathi publishers were publishing it. He added that as Samyak is the largest publisher of books related to the history of Bahujan movement, the information given in the calendar is backed by research.
Although Samyak Publications was the forerunner of this trend, various other publications have also jumped on the bandwagon and started publishing calendars. Prabudh Bharat, Das Publication, are some of the publications that also release calendars. Namami Publications, a Maharashtra-based publisher, releases Marathi calendars every year.
The Mooknayak spoke to RS Aghat from Prabudh Bharat Publication, which has been publishing the calendar for the last 5 years. He said, “Our pattern is the same based on the Bahujan Mulnivasi ideology, but we do not sell out the calendar. You won’t find a single copy of our publication being sold in the market. We work on a payback-to-society model. Our calendars are funded by people who donate to us. This fund helps us in printing the calendar; we print the calendar on the basis of pre-booking. Most of our customers are organizations working for the Bahujan society all over India, and we provide them with free copies on the basis of booking, and therefore we are not able to meet the demands after the publication of the calendars. Aghat says that in the first year, we published 2,000 copies, and this year we have scaled it to 10,000 copies.
E-Commerce and Calendar: Walking in Locksteps with the Time
In the times of digital marketing, one has to be in lock steps with the time. Therefore, the publishers of calendars have mined the rich seam of the internet boom and are selling their calendars online. Samyak Publications’ “Jai Bhim” calendar is available online at Amazon and Flipkart. Tathagat Live is an e-commerce platform owned by vlogger Anjul Bamhrolia. The platform sells merchandise produced by Dalit manufacturers and publishers.
Courtesy : The Mooknayak
Note: This news piece was originally published in themooknayak.com and used purely for non-profit/non-commercial purposes exclusively for Human Righ