Anand Limaye of Indian Printing Works in Mumbai is a book printer and publisher. Every year during the festival season, he is “super-duper busy” with Diwali Anks, the bumper-size magazines published in Marathi during Diwali, featuring literary writings and ads in equal measure. “This year, instead of 19 Diwali Anks, we have printed 11,” Limaye said.

This is not too bad for Limaye’s press, which has been operating a single shift in its Wadala and Bhiwandi factories since March. For Limaye and many others like him, the factories are running again post-lockdown. Printing equipment is the life-blood of any printing factory. These machines are expensive and need regular running and maintenance. That they were unable to do this during the lockdown was the biggest problem faced by printers when things came to a standstill.

Now the machines are running, but the printing numbers have seen a dip. For example, more than a hundred Diwali Anks have opted out of printed publication because of reduced advertisements and the logistical problem of how to get copies to readers.

Limaye said, “Had there been an issue like Zee UtsavNatyancha with one lakh copies, backed by ads on TV, the Diwali Ank market would have seen an uptick.” Usually, the Marathi Diwali Ank...

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