Room Conversation

January 10, 1977, Bombay
Prabhupada: ...at a time. Simply the sense must be there. Jnanavan. Bahunam janmanam ante jnanavan mam prapadyante [Bg. 7.19]. To surrender to Krsna is not easy, but if one is jnanavan, he can do it. So make your country jnanavan, not these rascals, unnecessarily wasting time by opposing us. They are rascals. So you have to turn these rascals into sense. Then it will take. Give them prasadam. Let them chant Hare Krsna. Time will come, ours. Do it. I'll die, but you shall remain. You are all young men. [break]
Gopala Krsna: After meeting with Mr. Narayana tomorrow I feel that I... What we first asked him for was some free advertisement, free advertising space that sometimes he gets. He says we'll have to write to Madras to the head office.
Prabhupada: That he'll do... If we get free, you send.
Gopala Krsna: No, if they just tell me that will take a week for them to get the answer, then should I wait for a week before starting the advertising campaign?
Prabhupada: No, the free, that is consideration. Let them give freely. You take advantage.
Prabhupada: So where is Jagadisa?
Gopala Krsna: He's in his room.
Prabhupada: I called him. Where is that... I made the...
Gopala Krsna: Advertisement.
Prabhupada: Advertisement, yes. So just exactly to that...
Gopala Krsna: Yes, Srila Prabhupada.
Prabhupada: Simply I have not added the name.
Gopala Krsna: Yes. And the list of books.
Prabhupada: List of... Yes.
Gopala Krsna: Just update it.
Prabhupada: Yes. Here are the spaces.
Gopala Krsna: Yes, for the addresses.
Prabhupada: Addresses. You can write. What is the address of the Vrnda Book Company?
Gopala Krsna: I have it with me in my office.
Prabhupada: So write it there.
Ramesvara: This paper circulates more than the Times.
Gopala Krsna: Combined. But not individually by city.
Ramesvara: But it's very close. Just in this city, Bombay, only twenty thousand papers difference. In Delhi, bigger circulation than Times.
Prabhupada: Competition.
Ramesvara: Very competitive. And it's overall much more.
Gopala Krsna: Yes, it's a fine paper. Therefore we decided.
Prabhupada: Please see that there is no printing mistake.
Gopala Krsna: No, we won't.
Prabhupada: That is...
Gopala Krsna: Yes, Srila Prabhupada. I'm giving Bombay address; Bhaktivedanta Book Trust, Hare Krsna Land, Juhu, Bombay; Bhaktivedanta Book Trust; and the Delhi address. Delhi temple also.
Prabhupada: No. Why Delhi temple? They are not executing?
Gopala Krsna: Okay. Because we have a good stock of books over there also.
Prabhupada: No, that is another thing. But they have no department for executing. They will be embarrassed when they receive order.
Gopala Krsna: OK, Bhaktivedanta Book Trust, Bombay and Bengal.
Prabhupada: Give the full address.
Gopala Krsna: Yes. I'm waiting for Jagadisa to bring. Including the telephone number on the bottom.
Prabhupada: Yes.
Gopala Krsna: Very often people just call up.
Ramesvara: In India when they have ads like this, Gopala, do they have coupons?
Gopala Krsna: Couponing is just introduced, being introduced in India. They'll not take.
Prabhupada: Telephone number, I think, Vrnda has also.
Gopala Krsna: Yes, he just got a phone. Lever Brothers, they've been experimenting with couponing in India. Not very...
Ramesvara: This man invited us to have the books reviewed.
Gopala Krsna: I saw that. We're going to work on that now, even get these books reviewed by Times of India and all... So this is free publicity, and this is respected publicity. They also have a telephone number now. I have seen in the news. I have it in my office.
Prabhupada: Telephone number?
Prabhupada: I think I have got. Yes, 617796
Gopala Krsna: 617796. If we give their address, then is postbox address then necessary?
Prabhupada: Postbox? Why?
Gopala Krsna: It is not necessary. Yes, that's what I'm asking. It's not.
Prabhupada: What is the address?
Gopala Krsna: 30 by 1B College Row, Calcutta 70009.
Prabhupada: Or Calcutta 9 is...
Gopala Krsna: Now they have the Pin code. Zip Code, so...
Prabhupada: Phone number.
Gopala Krsna: Yes, I have that. Telephone 617796. Now one question on pricing. Srimad-Bhagavatam, we are selling it to the libraries for forty-five rupees.
Prabhupada: No, no. It is not the question of library. What is the general price?
Gopala Krsna: The general price is...
Ramesvara: Lower.
Gopala Krsna: No. The general price is higher. What's the U.S. registered price? They're just asking that... It comes about seventy rupees.
Prabhupada: Don't make duplicity pricing.
Gopala Krsna: Exactly. That is why I'm discussing with you right now, Srila Prabhupada. Our pricing will be consistent. So I think forty-five rupees is reasonable. Above that, in India people will hesitate on buying. I'd like to get everyone to think it is available at...
Prabhupada: Why forty-five? We can reduce more even, do you think.(?)
Jagadisa: (indistinct)
Ramesvara: He's already charging the libraries forty-five rupees.
Prabhupada: That's all right.
Gopala Krsna: So we can't go below that...
Prabhupada: No.
Gopala Krsna: ...because then they...
Prabhupada: That's nice.
Gopala Krsna: Bhagavad-gita As It Is, Srila Prabhupada.... [break] What do you think?
Ramesvara: Lower the better.
Gopala Krsna: Yes. That is what I'm saying. Because...
Ramesvara: We are selling so many Gitas in America because we lowered the price.
Prabhupada: So you consult and do.
Ramesvara: Did you mention about the loans for Bhusana? Another thing.
Gopala Krsna: I had spoken to you earlier that we can expand our printing, especially in India...
Prabhupada: So now you have received nine lakhs' worth books. So how you'll pay?
Gopala Krsna: Nine lakhs' worth of books?
Prabhupada: From America.
Gopala Krsna: Yes. As we sell these, this money can be put into construction.
Prabhupada: So you have to inform them. He'll send less.
Gopala Krsna: Yes. I'll work that arrangement out with him before he goes back.
Prabhupada: So you should do that.
Gopala Krsna: Yes. I have told Ramesvara Maharaja that before he goes back to America he should spend a day with me so we can work all these things out. So after he leaves you, he will spend...
Prabhupada: Everything should be done businesslike.
Gopala Krsna: Yes. We don't want anything free.
Prabhupada: All first class.
Gopala Krsna: We can pay for things now. I'm just addressing Ramesvara Maharaja's help in getting our exports done. Once...
Prabhupada: He will help you, and then you can, you also, big business. You...
Gopala Krsna: Yes. These exports will give India a very good income.
Prabhupada: Or you can exchange. Whatever money you have received, you supply books.
Ramesvara: The government will insist on...
Gopala Krsna: No. The government will insist that we get foreign exchange, and...
Prabhupada: Anyway, if credit builds, you send less money.
Gopala Krsna: I got a letter from Bali-mardana Maharaja. He's ordered four thousand... Today I got a letter. He says... He's ordered the Bhagavatams also. Four thousand copies of First Canto, Part Two, he ordered already. So this one is four thousand copies, Srila Prabhupada...
Prabhupada: This is Indian printed?
Gopala Krsna: No, I'm printing that.
Prabhupada: Very good.
Gopala Krsna: Right on that, there's already a profit of more than twenty thousand rupees. So just with export...
Prabhupada: So you can return that twenty thousand rupees I have given you for Jayapataka. (laughter) Yes.
Gopala Krsna: Actually, we will invest that as further expansion, but if you want...
Prabhupada: Then you should also take it as loan.
Gopala Krsna: This all, advertisement?
Prabhupada: Yes. Certainly. It is business.
Ramesvara: From one pocket to another.
Prabhupada: Yes.
Gopala Krsna: Okay. So Bali-mardana says... I just got his letter today.
Prabhupada: I had one... When I was doing medical business I had one very nice customer. He was my patron also, one Muhammadan doctor, Sriraja Uttina.(?) He was very kind to me. He was just like a father to me. So his system was that in his pharmacy, patent medicine, drugs, medicine, surgical instruments, like that different headings. So suppose, at the sales time, sells some patent medicine. So he has got a box. So he puts the price in the patent medicine. And if he sells some surgical, he puts the price in the surgical pot. In this way, when they want to purchase again, so he would consult his pot, whether there is money. Then he'll allow to purchase. Otherwise not. So he told me, "This is my account. This is my account. When they want to purchase, they consign us something. I shall allow them to purchase so much as I have got in the box." This is... I have seen that gentleman. And in Calcutta there was... In our young time there was a cinema, Mr. Maddar, J.F. Maddar. He's a Parsee. So for some..., business, he was tenant of mine. One of my tenants. So in his room there were boxes. So I asked Mr. Maddar what is this box at home. And "This is the counter containing counter part of ticket in my cinema house. So these are sent to me. I count the counter part. Then I can calculate, 'This is the calculation.' I don't keep an account. Now let them do whatever they like. I understand that so many counter parts, so much money."
Gopala Krsna: Bali-mardana writes to me that he even wants to order 7.2 and 7.3 from India. So what I'm saying is the demand is there for our books. Because we are selling the Srimad-Bhagavatam for one dollar forty-five cents, same quality with plastic cover and two or three ribbon.
Prabhupada: No, one thing is that if you export, you will come to the light of the government. They want. And then you will get a good supply of paper.
Gopala Krsna: Yes. We can import paper also.
Prabhupada: Yes.
Gopala Krsna: So that's why I want you to spend a day or two. We have so many things I want to cover with you.
Prabhupada: Yes. He can send paper?
Gopala Krsna: Yes, what I had earlier written to him was we can import paper and I can give the money into construction. And because I have... I know the Joint Chief Control of Imports and Exports in Delhi, and he told me he would give me a license to import paper duty free. So we can import paper which you can pay for in Singapore, you follow? I'll give you the dealer, everything. And the paper will come. We'll print...
Prabhupada: You supplied paper to Japan, I think.
Ramesvara: Yes.
Prabhupada: So you can supply the paper.
Ramesvara: And now, whenever we print books in America, we supply paper. It's much cheaper if we buy it.
Prabhupada: Oh.
Gopala Krsna: We do the printing. I buy all the...
Ramesvara: The printer will mark it up if he has to spend his money for paper.
Gopala Krsna: Yes. In India also we buy the paper ourselves. We buy the paper and give it...
Prabhupada: That is good. Supply paper.
Gopala Krsna: We're dealing with all the paper mills directly.
Ramesvara: You take good savings that way.
Gopala Krsna: Yes. And also the printer likes it because it doesn't enter his account.
Ramesvara: Printer loves it. The printer doesn't have to spend his money on paper.
Prabhupada: Not only that, if he makes bill for the paper, then he has to pay sales tax.
Gopala Krsna: Yes. Also the income tax will say, "Your sales were so high," so he doesn't want the paper account to come under that. So what I'm saying, Srila Prabhupada... The demand for our books is there. And like BBT Los Angeles sells a Bhagavatam to the temples for $3.50, and we are selling it for $1.45. And that includes our profit already. Our real cost is 90 cents, 95 cents. So we can expand our printing capacity here. As I discussed with you last week, there's one machine from England that Usa Printers wants to import. And if we give him a loan... It will be his machine. He'll give us documents, and he'll pay back interest every month. In two years he'll pay back the whole money plus interest, which will be higher than what the bank gives us.
Prabhupada: Is that all right?
Ramesvara: What is the bank rate?
Gopala Krsna: The bank rate's about 12%. We'll do higher than the bank rate.
Prabhupada: No, no, no.
Prabhupada: Bank rate is not less than 16%.
Ramesvara: He is only offering 12% a year.
Gopala Krsna: No, he'll give us more than the bank rate. Whatever rate the bank lends at, we'll get more than that. That's understood.
Prabhupada: He may mean... "More than bank rate" means bank allows to their customer not more than 10%. But if you take loan from bank...
Gopala Krsna: Yes. I know he will give more. That loan...
Prabhupada: Take loan... The interest is...
Gopala Krsna: Yes, the borrowing loan. He will give more than that.
Prabhupada: The borrowing loan is not less than 16%.
Gopala Krsna: 15%... Yes. He'll offer 25%.
Ramesvara: I think this is a good idea because the printer will be indebted to us.
Gopala Krsna: And now we also need his help to make... I went all over India looking for printers.
Prabhupada: So do it immediately.
Ramesvara: This is a good opportunity for us to have a very solid relationship with the printer.
Prabhupada: Hm. That's nice.
Gopala Krsna: Also if we can give these Bhagavatams for a dollar to America, they can import it from here also, and as I told Ramesvara Maharaja, we can give a plastic cover plus two or three ribbons. Insured, it will cost nothing extra.
Prabhupada: You decide for (indistinct) why not.
Ramesvara: We're going to discuss it at the Mayapura festival with Tamala Krsna Swami, because he's in charge of distribution.
Prabhupada: Yes.
Ramesvara: He has to approve the quality.
Gopala Krsna: The quality's only a little inferior.
Prabhupada: I don't think India can make such quality.
Gopala Krsna: But the Gita we did came very close, Srila Prabhupada.
Prabhupada: It may come to close, but not to... Then that's all right. If it is possible, we can...
Gopala Krsna: Like Jayatirtha wrote to me. He prefers the Indian Gita to the American because it is economical.
Ramesvara: Because it is... Yes, because of the price.
Gopala Krsna: Yes. We all have to be realistic. The price...
Prabhupada: Now Jayatirtha is going first in selling, more than anyone.
Ramesvara: During the... During one week of Christmas he defeated Los Angeles. (Prabhupada chuckles)
Jagadisa: He's taking (indistinct).
Ramesvara: Oh, yes, he did.
Gopala Krsna: He was third on that list.
Ramesvara: His one temple defeated any other temple. His one temple was the number one temple, but as a whole zone...
Prabhupada: Jayatirtha is also good business. (chuckles) He has got good business brain. So do it nicely and Krsna...
Gopala Krsna: This will be very good.
Prabhupada: More work; more use your intelligence. Pranair arthair dhiya vaca: with life, with money, with intelligence, with words to serve Krsna. Etavaj janma-sa-phala tvam. This is the perfection of life. How? Etavaj janma-sal..., janma-sa-phala tvam dehinam iha dehisu. Iha dehi... This, in human body... Those who have got body as dog, cats, they have got body. But iha dehisu, this human form for perfection... And how that perfection is achieved? Pranair arthair dhiya vaca sreya acaranam sada: "With your life, with your money, with your intelligence, with your words, serve." That is perfect life.
Trivikrama: Today we have an engagement at the Gujarati... What was that?
Gopala Krsna: Nathdvar?
Prabhupada: Here?
Trivikrama: In Bombay. In the city we have a...
Prabhupada: So books are selling?
Prabhupada: Which ones selling?
Trivikrama: Well, they want mostly in Gujarati. They didn't read Hindi. There is magazines and Isopanisad.
Prabhupada: This magazine you have got?
Gopala Krsna: Yes. We have stock of Gujarati books also.
Prabhupada: No, this magazine.
Gopala Krsna: Oh. Not this one. This one hasn't arrived.
Trivikrama: This is a rupee and a half.
Gopala Krsna: These covers I did in Bombay. These are books from the other covers. They came out very good. Adi-rasa was telling me, in a week we'll also do the black and white in Bombay, because the quality is going to be better.
Prabhupada: You make expert, on quality expert.
Gopala Krsna: We are doing all the Gujarati covers in Bombay now, and I wrote to Jayapataka. We can even do the Bengali printing here.
Prabhupada: In India, Bombay is best. There are many offset printing houses.
Gopala Krsna: Like in the Bengali Back to Godhead they did in Calcutta, they spent eight paisa more per copy printing than Bombay, and quality was much inferior. So now I said, "You compose over there..."
Prabhupada: Typeset is Delhi good, but offset-Bombay.
Gopala Krsna: So what I've told them, Srila Prabhupada, is they can get the composing done in Bengal, Calcutta, then send it to me, like I get the Hindi composing done in Vrndavana and mail it to Bombay for printing. So it is cheaper and good quality, plus we have the whole department set up. One boy, Pippalai, he just takes care of technical aspects. And we have a shipping department all set up now. Two boys work just on the shipping.
Prabhupada: So supply department keep in one place.
Gopala Krsna: Yes. And we have very good...
Prabhupada: In other places it is...
Gopala Krsna: They don't have the men, and we have good...
Prabhupada: No. They supply all supplies. The orders should be supplied from one place.
Gopala Krsna: We're getting up to two months' credit on printing books. Everything is nicely set up.
Prabhupada: But keep your credit.
Gopala Krsna: Yes. I have very good credit, even with the paper manufacturers. They just give us the paper right away. We have very good credit at the moment because...
Prabhupada: What is that? You were asking something?
Ramesvara: No, I was just taking notes. Bali-mardana has ordered forty thousand Bhagavad-gitas for Australia.
Gopala Krsna: From India.
Ramesvara: From India, forty thousand.
Gopala Krsna: I got an order from Jayatirtha for sixty thousand. (Prabhupada chuckles) And this is just...
Prabhupada: His wife is good businesswoman.
Ramesvara: Bali-mardana's.
Prabhupada: Bali-mardana.
Ramesvara: Yes.
Prabhupada: She can do very good business. Is it not?
Gopala Krsna: Yeah. First they were hesitating, Srila Prabhupada. So what I did is I told Jayatirtha that Australia has already ordered, so he said, "Okay, I'll order sixty thousand." I told Australia that "England's already ordered," so he said, "I'll order forty thousand." (chuckling) We had to get the thing started at once.
Prabhupada: No, Australia, from India it is nearer, half-day(?).
Ramesvara: What is your printing cost on Bhagavad-gita?
Gopala Krsna: About 11.50, eleven rupees, fifty paisa. But the export edition is going to be cheaper because when you export, you get a lot of duties, so...
Prabhupada: Now, in export and exchange with paper, good paper.
Gopala Krsna: We can import paper. The government will let us import paper for exporting without any problem. But I'm just saying that the export edition of Gita is going to cost us about two rupees less than the Indian edition for Indian market because...
Prabhupada: So why not import paper? It will be very nice.
Gopala Krsna: Because on paper now there's high duty, but if it is for export, the government...
Prabhupada: Then America can order from you also.
Ramesvara: On the Gita, his price is not better than America.
Gopala Krsna: That is because of the...
Ramesvara: America, the printing is better and the price is better on the Gita, because we are printing so many copies.
Gopala Krsna: On the Bhagavatam the prices are better here.
Prabhupada: It is a quantity. They are giving nice price for large quantity.
Ramesvara: Even though the price is better in America, he is getting the market because he is selling it for less.
Gopala Krsna: And we are going to order few small extras. We're going to offer a few small extras like small ribbons with plastic cover.
Ramesvara: Has Prabhupada told you how much profit you should make? Because in America you have always said it should be marked up one hundred percent. If a book costs us one dollar, we should sell to the temple at two dollars. So your book is costing over one dollar, and you are only selling it for $1.45.
Gopala Krsna: No, no. The Bhagavatam's costing less. The Gitas we are selling for $1.50.
Gopala Krsna: The Bhagavatams... Also the freight from here is less. That's another feeling that we have. Prabhupada told me England, Australia, Africa should get books from India, and America, Canada, from America.
Prabhupada: There is no consideration of big profit. Simply we want big number, distribution. That's all.
Gopala Krsna: Also this will increase our prestige as a movement.
Prabhupada: Big number, as big as possible. My Guru Maharaja, he had magazines in six languages: English, Hindi, Bengali, Oriya, Assamese, and one Bengali daily. So if our men complained that "Such and such men are not giving their subscription, so, what we can do? Stop the supply?" Oh, he would become very angry. He asked them, "Are you commercial-hired fools? No! Supply free!" He used to say like that. He was asking, "Whether we shall stop supply? The subscription is not coming." So immediately he became angry: "Are you commercial-hired? If he's not giving price, supply him free." That was his policy. So less perfect or..., try to see how many numbers of books.
Gopala Krsna: Yes. Because once BBT India starts making profit, then the burden on BBT America will also be lessened. BBT India can start giving money for construction and other things. I foresee that if BBT India goes on, next, in 1977 we should make a profit of at least twenty-five lakhs rupees, twenty-five to thirty lakhs.
Prabhupada: That's nice. And open center village to village, town to town. Prthivite ache yata nagaradi-grama. See first printing is very first class and it is distributed very widely. Not shabby thing. No. Just like our Godbrothers, they printed... They have no printing; still, whatever they print, all shabby.
Gopala Krsna: Full of mistakes.
Prabhupada: Full of mistakes. Full of mistakes, the get-up is not good, but they'll sell. And they print only in Bengali.
Gopala Krsna: Jaya Srila Prabhupada.
Prabhupada: That's all.
Ramesvara: Thank you, Srila Prabhupada.
Prabhupada: Hare Krsna. (end)

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