NDWBF 2013 witnesses unprecedented crowds…

Organised by National Book Trust, India and India Trade Promotion Organisation (ITPO), the New Delhi World Book Fair (February 4-10, 2013) was a convergence of the publishing and intellectual world. Even the rain could not deter the book lovers from the mecca of books – the NDWBF 2013 witnessed unprecedented crowds…confirming the fact once again that printed word is here to stay!

The show was inaugurated by Dr Shashi Tharoor, Honourable Minister of State while Dr Karan Singh, the eminent author, Member of Parliament (Rajya Sabha) and president, Indian Council for Cultural Relations was the Guest of Honour. “Nothing delights more than encouraging Indians to read and celebrating books and childhood is the time to discover books,” said Dr Shashi Tharoor. He also said that though e-publishing has made inroads in India but only 16% of people read digital books, rest 74% still rely on conventional printed books.

While, Dr Karan Singh said for a book lover, there is no greater treat than book fair. Francois Richier, ambassador of France for India was the special guest on the occasion. “It is a very important occasion for France,” said Francois, “Though France has not invented writing, printing or internet, they have been contributing a lot to books not only for our consumption but whole community.”

The welcome address was given by A Sethumadhavan, chairman, NBT, who said that the hosting of such a fair is a huge responsibility bestowed on us and making it an annual affair needs a lot of planning and hard work. Sethumadhavan also mentioned the new initiatives in this fair like Rights Table, CEO Speak, authors’ corner, children activity corner, youth pavilion, etc. While, Sudhir Malhotra, president, Federation of Indian Publishers (FIP), said, “From a handful of publishing houses in the 1950s, India has grown to be amongst the top five publishing countries in the world. The picture looks bright but the progress is uneven.” Rita Menon, chairman & managing director, ITPO, welcomed the collaboration of HRD and ITPO for hoped that this would lead to bigger and better book fair in future. She also said that ITPO will promote fair at all international and national levels.

The expanse…

This year, the show was spread over an area of 45,000 sq m with 1100 participants and 2100 stalls. About 23 countries including China, USA, Poland, South Korea, Turkey and UNO agencies like WHO, UNESCO, among others were present in the foreign pavilion.

According to NBT sources, the number of visitors to the show has surpassed all previous records and the average number of visitors with entry ticket or complimentary invite rose to around 75,000. And, this time the show attracted substantially higher number of school children, college students, youngsters and librarians.

France was the Guest of Honor Country at the fair. The theme of the Fair was “Indigenous Voices: Mapping India’s Folk and Tribal Literature”, where the multifarious expressions of Indian’s traditional native cultures including exhibit of books, traditional art forms, crafts, panel discussions and performances were showcased.

The next show...

A Sethumadhavan declared Poland as the Guest of Honour country for 2014 edition of the New Delhi World Book Fair. The next show is scheduled to be held from February 15-23, 2014.

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