As Janani enters its 22nd year, it hopes to reach out to many more Telugu-speaking people in the city, reports LIiffy Thomas

Getting two Telugu books published reduced Challagali Babu Rao to nil balance. They did not sell well and he despaired of even publishing his third book, a collection of poems. That’s when Janani, a non-profit organisation, came to his help. His work was published and a book launch, inviting lovers of art and culture, was organised. “It gave me a big break and many people held discussions about my book,” says Rao, who doesn’t have a full-time job but writes poems.

Founded by Gudimetla Chennaiah on July 3, 1993, the non-profit organisation aims to promote Telugu tradition and culture. “We help any budding writer in Telugu publish and market his or her book. So far, we have released 26 books,” says Chennaiah, who retired from Indian Overseas Bank and is a resident of Kodungaiyur. Janani has nearly 10 members and its events are held at Potti Sreeramulu Memorial Society, Mylapore and Coronation Nagar, Korrukpet. 

To celebrate the 100th birth anniversary of Telugu poet Sankarambadi Sundarachari, the book ‘Maa Telugu Thalli Ki Mallepoonda’ published by Janani will be released at Delhi.   

Dwindling interest in learning the mother tongue at homes and a decrease in the number of schools offering Telugu as a medium of instruction are challenges Janani is trying to address, in association with other Telugu forums.

It connects people to cultural organisations such as World Telugu Association where classes are conducted.  Janani’s souvenir has names of schools and colleges that offer Telugu as a subject. Apart from this, it wants people from the community to take part and connect with others for events such as Mother Tongue Day (February 21); Women’s Day (March 8); Teacher’s Day (September 5) and its anniversary (July 3). Chennaiah can be reached at 9790783377.