On This Day – Udant Martand, the First Hindi-Language Newspaper in India, was Published in 1826

The weekly newspaper was published in Calcutta (present-day Kolkata).

The 30th of May every year is celebrated as Hindi Journalism Day in India. On this very date back in 1826, Udant Martand, the first Hindi-language newspaper in India, was published from Calcutta (present-day Kolkata). This was the maiden step toward what would later bring a drastic change in the country's socio-political scene.

Udant Martand was a weekly newspaper, published every Tuesday by Pt. Jugal Kishore Shukla. The newspaper's office was at 37, Amartalla Lane, Kolutolla, near Barabazar Market in Kolkata.

It was discontinued on December 4, 1827, due to various reasons.

A Brief History

Newspapers in several Indian languages (especially Urdu and Bengali) were starting during the early 19th century.

Pt. Jugal Kishore Shukla, a lawyer from Kanpur, came to Kolkata during this time and became Proceedings Reader at the Sadr Diwani Adalat, and later on a pleader. He, along with a few of his friends, dreamt of publishing a Hindi newspaper that would reach the masses.

On February 16, 1826, he received a license to publish a Hindi newspaper.

Finally, on May 30 of that year, the first Hindi-language newspaper was published with 500 copies. It incorporated a mix of Khari Boli and Braj Bhasha dialects of Hindi.

However, Udant Martand could not gather many subscribers (especially because of its distance from the Hindi-speaking areas of India). The publisher had to struggle hard with its finances.

So, it was eventually closed on December 4, 1827.

Some Interesting Facts

Although Udant Martand ended up being an unsuccessful venture, it inspired many to take up Hindi journalism.

Shukla started a magazine (titled 'Samdand Martand') in 1850, which ran till 1929.

Sudha Varshan, the first Hindi daily, was published in Calcutta in 1854.


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