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Publisher levels plagiarism charge against writer-activist Shudra Srinivas

Staff Reporter

Bangalore: H.A. Venkatesh, publisher, has accused writer-activist Shudra Srinivas of plagiarising from his book Karnatakada Arasu.

Addressing presspersons here on Thursday, Mr. Venkatesh said that his book was published in 2001 by Rachana Prakashana, Mandya. While he was chief editor, the other editors were Hi. Shi. Ramachandra Gowda, former president of Karnataka Folklore Academy, and Krishnamurthy Hanur, professor, Kuvempu Institute of Kannada Studies, University of Mysore. “The Department of Kannada and Culture, in March this year, brought out a collection of books under the Suvarna Sahitya Granthamaale. One of the books, titled Devaraj Urs Ondu Avalokana, by Shudra Srinivas is a complete lift from our book,” he alleged.

Dr. Gowda said Devaraj Urs Ondu Avalokana was released by Governor Rameshwar Thakur, and even has a foreword written by the former Chief Minister H.D. Kumaraswamy.

“We got to know of this blatant case of plagiarism only last week. The ‘author’ has lifted entire sections of the book and not given any credit where it is due. The sequence of articles has also not been changed!”

Mr. Venkatesh, while citing examples, alleged that as many as 57 chapters from his book had been lifted. A chapter titled Arasu Chakravarthy Anthe Nadedukondaru is on page 53 in his book, while it is on page 9 in Mr. Srinivas’s book. Another chapter — Devaraj Arasarannu Kanda Sandharbhagalu — is on page 8 in his book and in Mr. Srinivas’s book, it is on page 158.

When contacted, Mr. Srinivas denied the charges and maintained that he had sought the permission of the publisher and editors.

“I was introduced to their book by poet K.P. Mruthyunjaya. I discussed it with him and later met with the editors, who gave me the permission to use sections from their book for mine. I have also borrowed from books brought out by Devaraj Urs Samshodana Samsthe, articles written by Yellappa Reddy and Konundur Lingappa. There is no basis for their allegations. I am not worried about the legal action they are threatening to initiate against me.”

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