Delhi's First Literature Festival Begins

Writers are duty bound to provoke thought and prevent degradation in society, Delhi Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit today said at the inaugural edition of Delhi Literature Festival.

"The society is going down and it is the writers and thinkers who can help us to shake up things. We need to pick up strings again and nobody can be better than writers for this work," Dikshit said here.

The two day Delhi Literature Festival got underway today at Indira Gandhi National Centre for the Arts (IGNCA).

The first day's events saw a book launch, discussions on literature in the age of new media, independent publishing in India as well as a poetry session.

Italian Ambassador Daniele Mancini who felicitated authors along with Dikshit said, "There is a keen and rapidly growing interest in Indian literature. India is becoming popular even in remote countries."

With several literary festivals happening in India, this is the first festival of literature to be organised in the national capital.

Chairperson of the National Commission on Minorities Wajahat Habibullah said that it is a promising trend.

"So many literature festivals are happening in our country and young people are attending them in good numbers, it is a promising trend," Habibullah said.

Author Madhulika Liddle's 'My Lawfully Wedded Husband' was launched at the first session of the literary event organised by Unnati Fortune Group and Cinedarbaar.

Prominent names like Advaita Kala and Arunava Sinha lead the list of 35 authors who will form a part of the event.

In a session 'Beyond The Blog: New Media and the Future of Literature', blogger Jai Arjun Singh said that new media gives opportunity to write without the limitation of word limit.

"I was getting frustrated with limited word count. Blogs provided me with a writing practise," said Singh the writer and blogger of 'Jabberwock'.

Author of 'The Adventures of an Intrepid Film Critic' Anna MM Vetticad said that though Internet is a wonderful place, it is extremely dangerous at the same time.

"There is a great democratisation of voice due to social media but people need to be taught how to use it. There are propaganda websites also", Vetticad said.

Director Lifi Publication Ramesh Mittal in a session on 'Indie Publishing in India' said, "Indie publishing comes from independent art. With new technology more and more Indie publishing is happening."

Former civil servant and literary-cultural critic Ashok Vajpeyi addressed a session on poetry.

The second day of the festival will see a musical performance by Zakrus Group, a folkloric music band, that is heading down to perform at the festival all the way from Iran and a unique storytelling session by Michal Malinowski, from Poland.

Emerging story. Watch this space for updates as more details come in
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