No country comes close to matching the linguistic diversity of India. But in today’s world, the use of regional languages has deteriorated. We must protect our culture, traditions, and literature. The vernacular tongue, that was earlier taken for granted, needs effort, patience, and persistence, for it to be brought back into relevance in India, especially for the younger generation whose aspirations are so closely tied to familiarity with English.
Learning to speak in the mother tongue is very important for children’s’ overall development. Being fluent in the mother tongue benefits children in many ways. It connects them to their culture, ensures better cognitive development, and aids in the learning of other languages. And what better way to start getting children to appreciate their mother tongue(s) early in life, than books?
It seems like there is no dearth of titles. Here is a list of publishing companies that publish books in regional languages and websites that sell books in regional languages. Go on, read with or for your children, and encourage them to explore their mother tongue!
Explore your mother tongue – Regional Language Books for Children
Tulika has titles 8 Indian languages: Hindi, Tamil, Malayalam, Kannada, Telugu, Gujarati, Bengali and Marathi apart from English. They have bi-lingual books too. Their books are bright with colorful illustrations.
Pratham Books cover a range of genres including early readers, fiction, non-fiction, and storybooks on science, history, mathematics and nature. They are dedicated to making available high-quality, low cost books to children and improve the quality of education in India. Most titles are available in Hindi, English and Kannada.
Moderately priced, NBT publishes books under different series in English and in all major Indian languages of India, viz. Hindi, Asamiya, Bangla, Gujarati, Kannada, Kashmiri, Konkani, Malayalam, Manipuri, Marathi, Nepali, Oriya, Punjabi, Rajasthani, Bhojpuri, Sindhi, Tamil, Telugu, and Urdu. In addition, NBT also publishes select books for children in Bhili, Gondi, Santhali and some north-eastern languages, such as Ao Naga, Bhutia, Boro, Garo, Khasi, Kokborok, Lepcha, Lirnboo, Mising, Mizo and Newari.
CBT are the pioneers of children’s publishing in India. They produce well written, well illustrated and well-designed books for children. The books are available in Hindi and English.
Children’s books form a major part of its publishing; the titles range from picture books, fiction, biographies, history, science and environment. It includes innovative products such as material for picture reading and EQ building for the pre-primary level. They publish in English and Marathi.
Ekalavya publishes books that include educational classics, educational modules for teachers and children, picture books, material for young readers and beginners, activity books, fiction and non-fiction, books on various social issues and so on. Eklavya has published book titles in Hindi, English, Marathi, Gujarati, Bangla, and Urdu. It has also published some titles in non-mainstream languages like Gondi, Korku, Malwi, and Bundeli.
Amar Chitra Katha is a comic series that focuses on different genres, including epics and mythology, fables and humor and visionaries, among others. Tales of bravehearts succeeding at war and boxed collections, Amar Chitra Katha has it all. They have more than 400 comics in 20+ languages.
DC Books publishes books in all genres, in Malayalam and English. Mango, Children’s Imprint of DC Books has a strong focus on Indian content.
Diamond Group of Publications is another of India’s largest publishing houses. They publish books in languages such as Hindi, Urdu, English, Marathi, Bengali, Oriya, Assamese and Gujarati. The publications include various types of books like nonfiction, fiction, humor, poetry, literature, biographies, astrology, yoga and health.
Katha Books is a leading name in translation genre in Indian publishing and produces stories from contemporary India, unusual Indian folklore and unsung mythology, translated into English and Hindi from 21 regional Indian languages Katha is exclusively devoted to translating regional Indian writers into English.
Unistar Books has a substantial presence in Punjabi Literature as well as in popular, trade books and children books. It publishes literature, novels, poetry, history, social sciences and humanities, popular science, popular trade books and children books, biographies, fiction, non-fiction, and other creative-writings in English, Hindi and Punjabi.
Manjul Publishing House publishes books in English, as well as Hindi, Tamil, Telugu, Marathi, Gujarathi, Kannada, Bengali, Punjabi, Oriya, Manipuri and Assamese. Manjul Publishing House is credited with translating the Harry Potter books into Hindi.
Nava Karnataka Publications has been consistently striving to develop book-culture by way of publication and distribution of books dealing with a wide range of subjects. Apart from having permanent sales outlets in Bangalore, Mysore, Mangalore and Gulbarga, it conducts book exhibitions all over the state almost throughout the year. They have a good collection of children’s books.
Vasantha Prakashana has a variety of children’s books in Kannada including board books, stories, comics and more.
This site has a good collection of books, CD’s and DVD’s in Kannada. Check out Neethi Kathegalu, Ajjiya Kathegalu and Akbar mathu Birbal Kathegalu series of books.
Daily Hunt is a mobile app where you can download and read stories in many regional languages. This has a decent collection of children’s books that are Free!
This is a digital repository of multi-lingual stories (over 1,300 stories in 33 languages are available for free). It is an initiative from Pratham Books, which helps further the endeavour to find newer ways to ensure that every child is able to discover the joy of reading.
This site has a variety of books in Bengali for children and teens across different genres.
This has a good collection of books for children in Telugu.
This has a good collection of books for children in Telugu.
New Horizon Media publishes books in Tamil, Malayalam, and English. The organization also publishes e-books and audio books.
Do you read to your children in their mother tongue? Have we missed your favourite regional language children’s book publisher or website? Let us know in the comments.