Initial years – Narrated by Late Sri M C Jayadeva, former General Secretary
Rashtrotthna Parishat started its life in a rented building on South End Road.. When the idea of starting an organization named ‘Rashtrotthana Parishat’ cropped up, it intended to bring social reforms through literature.
As a first step ‘Utthana’ (“ಉತ್ಥಾನ”) a Kannada monthly was started. The first edition rolled out on 05.10.1965 (Vijayadashami). 5000 copies were printed! Dr. Suryanatha Kamath was the first Editor.
Our first book was ‘Ranaveelya’ (‘ರಣವೀಳ್ಯ’). It contains the stories of soldiers who became martyrs during the attacks by Pakistan and China. The book was published on 05.12.1965 (Geeta Jayanthi); 3000 copies were printed priced at 1.50 Rs. each.
Second book was ‘Yavana Vijetha Chandragupta’, (‘ಯವನ ವಿಜೇತ ಚಂದ್ರಗುಪ್ತ’) and the third, ‘Kannadada Kadugaligalu’, (‘ಕನ್ನಡದ ಕಡುಗಲಿಗಳು‘).
Next few books were ‘Atmaahuti’ (‘ಅತ್ಮಾಹುತಿ‘) is an autobiographical style narrative on the life of Veer Savarkar, ‘Ajeya’ (‘ಅಜೇಯ‘) is about Chandrashekar Azad and ‘Adamya’ (‘ಅದಮ್ಯ‘) is about Vasudev Balwant Padke.
Another important release is “Rudirabhisheka’ (‘ರುಧಿರಾಭಿಶೇಕ‘) on the lives of Bhagha Jatin Singh and his team of revolutionaries.
An interesting story about the release of the book ‘Atmaahuti’ (‘ಅತ್ಮಾಹುತಿ‘) is we thought of inviting a freedom fighter or a revolutionary to dedicate the book to the world. After discussing a few names finally we invited Vidyavathi Devi, mother of martyr Bhagat Singh. His brother Kulabir Singh accompanied the aged mother. She came by train all the way from distant Punjab. Let alone arranging for her air travel, we could not even afford first class travel for her. Anyway, the event went very well at Sir Puttannachetty Town Hall. 600 copies were sold on a single day! It was a record at that time. Many congratulated us.
Thus our journey went on, finding joy in facing newer and bigger challenges. We were so accustomed to facing challenges that we used to feel lost when there were none! This was the mental strength of workers in those days. Any new work would bring with it newer and greater challenges.
Thus we planned the publication of 510 Bharata-Bharati books. Initially it was named as “Kishora Sahitya Sampathu’ (‘ಕಿಶೋರ ಸಾಹಿತ್ಯ ಸಂಪತ್ತು’). When we met and decided upon this task, we had no inputs and we needed an editor.
We were happy that Prof L S Sheshagiri Rao, a renowned litterateur and exemplary critic, who had admirably and successfully accomplished the challenging task of translating “Bunch of thoughts” by Sri Guruji ( M S Gowalkar) to Kannada, accepted to be the chief editor of our series of 510 booklets of Bharata-Bharati book series. The price of the book was then 75 Paise.
Meanwhile we had shifted our office from South-end to the present place, at Kempegowda Nagara.
We had the mental toughness to face any kind of challenges. As a result, Parishat developed. And today, its fragrance has spread throughout the KARNATAKA STATE.