M N Rao


MemoriesHall of Fame

M N Rao - The Doyen of Telugu Publishing

M.N.Rao (1924-1978) was a towering personality in Indian publishing who promoted Telugu literature throughout the country and abroad. Beginning his career as a textbook publisher in his father's firm, M.Seshachalam&Co., he entered general publishing after the nationalisation of textbooks in Tamil Nadu and Andhra Pradesh at a time when books other than translations from Bengali and Hindi were few and far between. He brought books from all corners of the country within reach of the common man through two innovative ventures : the Home Library Plan - which now covers at least 44,000 families- and EMESCO Pocket Books Programme, under which 450 books, in addition to classics, have been issued.

Rao played a significant role in all branches of publishing. He edited a magazine, Pusthaka Prapancham (Book World), and distributed books in India and abroad.

He served the publishing industry in several important capacities. As President of Federation of Publishers and Booksellers Associations in India he conducted seminars, symposia, training courses and workshops on book production in India and abroad. He was a member of the Book Publication Committee constituted by the Andhra Government to advise it on nationalisation of textbooks; Board of Trustees of Southern Languages Book Trust; Advisory committee of Madras Institute of Development Studies; a founder member of Publishers Association of South India, and Director of the Book Industry Council of South India.