Shimla book fair starts May 12

News, Views

Shimla : A six day book fair organised by the National Book Trust (NBT) gets underway in this popular hill station of Himachal Pradesh Saturday .

“The book fair is being held at the IG sports complex on the Mall from May 12 to May 17 ,” said M.A.Sikandar director , NBT here Friday .

“Along with NBT around 50 publishers will put out books in english and hindi ,” Sikandar  told Sun Post .

Manas Ranjan Mahapatra editor NBT said during the fair evenings will be devoted to literary events like pustak mela , sahitya chopal among other events .

The book fair will be opened by the state chief minister P.K.Dhumal . The stalls will be open for book lovers from 11 a. m. to 7 p.m.

The once regular book fair is returning to Shimla after a few years .

NBT officials say the gap has taken place due to unavailability of enough space in downtown crowded Shimla  in summer .

Asked about the current reading habits in the country the NBT director said there is an annual growth of 20 per cent readership in India .

“According to our recent survey despite the growth of television and the internet the largest number of readers between 18 to 25 age group are in rural and semi-urban areas ,” said Sikandar .

“The highest number of readers are in Bihar , West Bengal and Kerela ,” he said .

“The Delhi book fair is the world’s second largest and we have been holding it for the last 40 years .It used to be held every alternate year but now is an annual event . India is the third largest publisher of english books after the US and UK ,” said the NBT director .

“NBT holds around 15 regional fairs every year , our next destination is Jammu & Kashmir ,” he said .

Talking about the future plans of NBT he said NBT would soon come out with e-books  in the next four months or so  as talks were on for tie-ups for public , public private participation .