Just one centimetre, this ‘Hanuman Chalisa’ costs Rs.100,000

February 17th, 2009 - 2:32 pm ICT by IANS  

Lucknow, Feb 17 (IANS) This book is so small that you need a magnifying glass to read it, but it is up for sale at a whopping Rs.100,000 (Rs.1 lakh). On display at an ongoing fair in Uttar Pradesh’s Varanasi district is a “Hanuman Chalisa” measuring just one square centimetre.

The tiny book, which contains verses in praise of Hindu monkey god Hanuman, has been made by 57-year-old Raj Kumar Verma. The book, showcased at the industrial handicraft fair in Varanasi, is complete with hand-made illustrations too.

“It took me nearly seven months to complete the ‘Hanuman Chalisa’,” Verma told IANS over telephone from Varanasi.

“You may say the price of the book is quite exorbitant. But only I know how much hard labour went into it. The price tag is just for my labour,” said Verma, who hails from Basantpur village in Gorakhpur district.

The book, which can be read through a magnifying glass, also contains 22 pictures of Lord Hanuman in various forms.

“Like the text, I have drawn the pictures with my hands,” he said. “At any stage, I have not taken the help of machines while making the chalisa.”

Verma is quite sure that the “Hanuman Chalisa” will attract a buyer despite its steep price.

“The book may not get a buyer during the fair, but I’m quite sure an ardent Hanuman devotee will approach me some day and buy this book,” he said.

Also on display at Verma’s stall is a map of India prepared with 880 grains of rice that is priced at Rs.15,000.

“When you view the map through a magnifying glass, you will notice ‘Vande Mataram’ painted in four Indian languages,” Verma added.

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