GUWAHATI, Oct 21 – The 16th North East Book Fair, organised by All Assam Publishers and Book Sellers’ Association, would be held at the Chandmari AEI ground from November 1 to 12. The organisers, while addressing the media, said that despite the fact that the book fair schedule was preponed due to another book fair under the aegis of the State government, preparations are going on in full swing to make the programme a success.
A total of 16 eminent personalities, representing various fields, would inaugurate the 16th edition of the book fair. Union Minister of State, Independent Charge, Sarbananda Sonowal, would be the distinguished guest at the inaugural function. Heads of the National Book Trust and the Sahitya Akademi are also expected to take part in the inaugural programme. Union Minister of Human Resource Development Smriti Irani and eminent scientist Dr Jitendra Nath Goswami would also attend the book fair.
The organisers will pay rich tributes to prominent litterateurs like late Hem Barua, Debakanta Barua, Lakhyadhar Choudhury, Dr Maheswar Neog, Kanchan Baruah, Munin Borktoky and Gajen Baruah. As a focal theme of this year’s book fair, the works and contributions of all these writers would be reviewed.
Political analyst VJ Verghese, journalist Prabhu Chawla and other intellectuals from different parts of the country would take part in the fair.
“We have to preserve the grandeur of the book fair, despite little time at hand. Due to the government’s decision to organise the Assam Prakashan Parishad’s fair during our scheduled time in November-December, we are re-arranging our programmes as per the new schedule,” said Dhiraj Goswami, general secretary of the fair.
Publication houses from Kolkata, Delhi, Ludhiana and other parts of the country are likely to take part in the fair. On November 5, tributes will be paid to cultural icon Dr Bhupen Hazarika on his third death anniversary, which will be followed by a day-long cultural programme based on Dr Hazarika’s music.
Books worth Rs 2 crore were sold during the last edition of the fair and the organisers are expecting more footfalls this year. Students with identity cards and the elderly can enter the fair free of cost, whereas for others, the entry fee would be Rs 10 per person. A procession would be taken out on November 1 from the Guwahati Press Club to the AEI field. Journalist and intellectual from West Bengal Azizul Haque, novelist Suchitra Bhattacharya, writer Shirshendu Mukhopadhayay would take part in different interactive sessions of the fair.