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Swamiji draws crowds at book fair

Tomes have trumped the Internet at the 28th Jamshedpur Book Fair.

The fair, which began on November 23 at Sakchi’s Rabindra Bhavan ground, has already witnessed a huge demand for books on the life and works of Swami Vivekananda — the theme of this year — with many kiosks running out of stock and ordering reprints. Noted Bengali author Mani Shankar Mukherjee, also known as Sankar, inaugurated the fair.

Gleeful organisers said the trend was different, if not unexpected, from a city, which mainly depended on the Internet for its share of knowledge on Vivekananda.

Sources said earlier only the Ramkrishna Mission kiosk used to stock books on the monk. However, this year almost all major publishing houses, like Calcutta’s Sahityam Publication and De Publication, had put up for sale works on the life of Swamiji.

“We have already sold more than 35 sets of books written by Sankar on Swami Vivekananda. So far the response has been overwhelming. There are a number of titles available for sale, but we are offering a package of five books penned by Sankar at a discount price of Rs 600 instead of Rs 690,” said Bhola Nath Roy, sales executive of Sahityam Publication.

Roy said Abishashya Vive-kananda, Nirbachito Sri Sri Ramkrishnakathamrita, Aami Vivekananda Bolchhi, Sulochana and Achena Ajana Vivekananda topped the wish-list of buyers. Yoddha Sanyasi Vivekananda by Basant Poddar, Yugdrashta Vivekananda by Rajiv Ranjan has been selling like hot cakes, he said.