For the first time, the Calcutta Book Fair will showcase an IT complex where 17 tech firms will display their wares. The decision has been made to highlight the “rapid growth of the IT industry in Bengal”, said the Publishers and Booksellers Guild, organisers of the fair, on Saturday.
The Book Fair would be inaugurated by Cuba-based author Luis Toledo Sande on January 29, said Guild secretary Kalyan Shah. Chief minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee and other dignitaries will be present on the occasion.
According to Guild officials, apart from 600 book stalls, there will be 14 others for foreign publishers. A large area has been earmarked for stalls displaying children’s books and an auditorium to stage cultural shows for kids.
Foreign countries and agencies participating in the fair include Australia, BBC, World Bank, France, Latin American nations and the European Commission. Besides, noted authors and Booker Prize winners, Peter Carey and Kim Scott from Australia, will also attend.
The entry fee to the fair has been increased to Rs 5 from Rs 4 in 2002. Concessions will be offered to students visiting the fair in groups. There will be no entry fee for senior citizens.
According to the Guild secretary, the Ashok Kumar Sarkar Memorial Lecture will be held on February 3 at the UBI auditorium on the fair ground. This year, the lecture will be delivered by Frank Agiiero Gomez, editor of Granma International, the largest circulated daily in Cuba.
The Supriya Sarkar Memorial Lecture will be delivered by Amlan Dutta on February 5. Former BBC correspondent Mark Tully will be present at the prize distribution ceremony on February 7.
The Book Fair’s theme pavilion will be a replica of the Jose Marti Memorial Hall in Cuba. Of the six entry gates, one will be an imitation of Havana University, while three others will be modelled on Cuban architecture. The fifth entrance will resemble the Warangal gate in Andhra Pradesh, and the sixth will be a copy of King’s College, Cambridge.
The Metro railway authorities have agreed to run six additional trains during the 12 day-long Book Fair, Shah added.
nIndira statue: Chief minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee will unveil a statue of former Prime Minister Indira Gandhi in the park opposite Birla Planetarium on Republic Day. “Mayor Subrata Mukherjee has taken the initiative to instal the statue, sculpted by Ramesh Pal, and name the park after Indira Gandhi,” said Rajiv Deb, mayor-in-council, in charge of drainage.