Kolkata Literature Festival to host French, Scottish writers in book fair

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Kolkata, Feb 6 (IANS) A number of French authors, a panel of Scottish crime writers, a poet and poetry activist from the US and diplomat-turned-politician Shashi Tharoor will be present at the fifth edition of Kolkata Literature Festival (KLF) this year, organisers said on Tuesday.

Known to be the only festival of its kind to be organised within the fold of an international book fair, the three-day literary extravaganza would be held from February 8- 10 in the Central Park Mela Complex in Salt Lake, where the International Kolkata Book Fair has been shifted this year.

“This is the only literature festival in the world that is organised within an international book fair. This is a unique feature of this festival. There is a captive audience of at least 25-30,000 present at the fair ground on a daily basis. They get a chance to hear from and also interact with their favourite authors from India and abroad,” Tridib Chatterjee, General Secretary of the Publishers & Booksellers Guild, told reporters.

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More than 60 authors from India and abroad would participate in 22 sessions of the KLF, discussing and debating topics like cross cultural influences on literature and significance of classics to performance poetry.

“As France is the focal theme of the book fair this year, 10 French authors would be participating in the various sessions in KLF. There would also be a crime writers’ delegation from Scotland and famous American poet and poetry activist Bob Halman among others,” said festival director Sujata Sen.

“There would be sessions on Hindi poetry and on how the Indian epic are coming out as bestsellers even in the present times,” she added.

Congress MP and noted writer Tharoor is also scheduled to be present at the festival to discuss his new book “Why I am a Hindu”, that recently courted controversy after criticism from Union Minister of State for Home Affairs Kiren Rijiju on social media.

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Former Rajasthan Governor Margaret Alva would take part in a discussion on the country’s present political scenario while contemporary Indian author Ravinder Singh and ‘Bahubali’ author Anand Neelakantan would share their literary views.

–IANS

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