The ‘grey house’ publishing houses of Bengaluru: the new breed
Bengaluru’s “grey house” publishing houses have been taking over publishing houses across the city.
As the “grey” publishing house category has become a buzzword in the Indian publishing world, it is time to ask if these houses are not simply a way for the Indian government to keep the print industry afloat in a climate of uncertainty.
Is it a way to keep book prices high?
Or are they a way by which the government keeps control over what is published in print and how much it charges?
These are the questions that need to be asked and answered in order to find out.
Let us begin with the question of price.
As many readers know, Bengaluru is not just a city for the people.
The city is also home to the largest number of publishing houses in the country.
It is a city of great wealth and prestige for the publishing houses that have been established here.
In the last five years, we have seen the number of books sold by Bengaluru publishing houses rise by almost 60% from 7.8 lakh to 9.4 lakh.
There is no doubt that this is the fastest rate of growth in the last two decades.
The growth rate is not due to the increased number of authors or the number in the print books.
The increase is due to increased advertising.
The number of print books sold in Bengaluru has increased by almost 40% from 8.2 lakh to 10.4 crores.
The print book market is not only a huge market but also a big opportunity for the government to grow its book sales and profits.
The government, however, has yet to take a firm stance on this issue.
In fact, we are witnessing a debate in Bengaloura on the issue.
The debate in the city has been going on for a while now, and the government has not even been willing to acknowledge that Bengaluru should not be seen as a place for independent books.
For a long time now, we had a debate on this subject.
I had a conversation with the minister in charge of the digital department, and she was very clear that Bengalouras book market should not come under the category of ‘independents’.
She said that the ‘independent’ category is not appropriate for a city that is home to so many independent book publishers.
She said it would be better for us to look at publishing houses as ‘publishers’.
The other thing that is not mentioned in the debate is the fact that the government is looking at publishing as a whole as an industry rather than the ‘indie’ category.
This is the reality.
The government has been talking about the ‘new breed’ of publishers.
This would mean that all the publishing house titles should be included in the ‘publishing’ category, even if the books are not published by independent publishers.
This would mean, in effect, that book publishers would have to be ‘indispensable’ for the state of the publishing industry in Bengalur.
This is why there is a debate about the role of the print publishers in the market.
The question is, will these publishers have to remain ‘independent’?
It is not clear whether this is a position that the Bengalourians government should be taking.
As a matter of fact, many of the book publishers, who have come to the city to sell their books, are actually members of the publishers association, and it is very difficult for them to get a publisher’s license for their books.
The issue of independent publishers is also not an issue for the print houses.
The issue is about whether the government should continue to allow print publishers to be part of the Bengaluru book market.
The question of whether print publishers should be part or not of the city book market has been debated for years.
In 2011, the Supreme Court had asked the government if it was okay for print publishers, publishers and publishers association to join the book publishing market.
In 2016, the government had a different opinion.
It said that, under Section 7 of the Representation of the People Act, all the publishers and all the book-sellers should be recognised as part of a single category of book publishers and book publishers association.
But this does not mean that they should be allowed to operate as a single entity.
If the government wants to allow them to operate, then they should give them the same status as book publishers under the same section.
We do not want the state to be left out of the process.
The book publishing industry, however has been lobbying for a lot of time.
The book publishing companies, who are the biggest in the book industry, have been fighting hard to get the government’s approval for this proposal.
The state government is also part of this lobbying.
This time, however it was the print companies who got the government approval.
The debate over this issue has been raging in Bengalaures book industry.
The publishers association has said that it wants the state government