New Delhi: Seminars, discussions, poetry sessions and interactive programmes for children will engage visitors at the 19th edition of the Delhi Book Fair that kickstarts here Friday, organisers said.
This year, the fair will address the erosion of the reading habit as its theme, "Libraries and Readerships", will focus on the role of libraries in society.
Organised since 1995 by the Federation of Indian Publishers (FIP) in collaboration with the India Trade Promotion Organisation (ITPO), the nine-day fair will attract over 250 participants from India and abroad. The fair ends Aug 31.
Elaborating on the theme, Ashok Gupta, general secretary of FIP told IANS: "Good libraries were once considered treasures of society. They were part of us, but today reading habits of people are going down. We wanted to raise this issue and so we decided to make it the theme of our fair."
"The aim is to develop neighbourhood libraries. If people work in tandem, it is possible to start from the local area and have small library set-ups," he said.
Apart from the national capital, that dominates the publishing industry, participation of publishers from Agartala, Andhra Pradesh, Jharkhand, Kerala, Maharashtra, and international participants from the US and China will mark their presence at this business-to-business event at Pragati Maidan in central Delhi.
Other than displaying treasure troves of books from various genres, there will be discussion on "Library and the Reader", poetry sessions, a seminar on "Tales for Today's Children: Connecting to the Roots" and an interactive programme for children "Sune, Jane, Khele Kahani".
There will also be a debate organised for university students, on "Environmental Disaster caused due to Development of Vulnerable Hilly Areas".
The fair is open to the public from 11.00 a.m. to 8.00 p.m., Aug 23-3.