Asterix, world’s most widely read comic series, will now be available in Hindi. Alexandre Ziegler, the French Ambassador to India, on Wednesday launched the first four albums in the series at the Residence of France.
“Thrilled to release 4 rib-tickling #Asterix albums in Hindi published by OM Books! Kudos to Dipa Chaudhuri & Puneet Gupta for the excellent translations. Get your copies today and embark on hilarious adventures with our heroes Asterix and Obelix – क़सम तूतातिस की, बहुत मज़ा आएगा!” tweeted Ambassador Ziegler following the launch.
In a statement issued on the day of the launch, Ambassador Ziegler said that comic series has the “ability to please and renew his audience, generation after generation”.
“The characters embodying French spirit are timeless and such a part of French heritage. Their stories are an opportunity for readers to get a glimpse of the history of the figures’ country of origin. Making the humour and stories accessible in another language and culture is no mean feat, so I warmly congratulate the translators for taking up this challenge,” Ambassador Ziegler said.
Published by Om Books International, the books have been translated by Dipa Chaudhuri and Puneet Gupta.
The books that were launched are: Astérix: Gaulwasi Astérix; Astérix: Sone ki Darati; Astérix: Astérix aur Gawthwasi; Astérix: Astérix Talwarbaz.
The immensely popular Franco-Belgian comic book series was first launched on 29 October 1959.
It chronicles the humorous adventures of two characters from Roman era Gaul – Asterix and his friend Obelix. After drinking a magic potion, Asterix gains superhuman strength that allows the two to defeat the army of Roman emperor Julius Caesar.
Written by René Goscinny till 1979 and illustrated and written by Albert Uderzo till 2009, the comic book series has already been translated in 111 languages and dialects.
According to the Céleste Surugue, managing director of Les Éditions Albert René – the publisher, 375 million copies have been sold worldwide to date.
Read and loved by many in India, Asterix is already available in other Indian languages such as Bengali.
So phenomenal has been the influence of the comic book series in France that the country named its first satellite, launched in 1965, after the titular character. The main characters from the comic book series also appeared on the cover page of Time magazine in 1991.