Frontlist | Hyderabad's fav year-end book event postponedFrontlist | Hyderabad's fav year-end book event postponed
on Dec 15, 2020
The annual Hyderabad Book Fair is not happening this year and the pandemic is the obvious reasonHYDERABAD: What would typically be the Hyderabadi’s favourite year-end event — stocking up on books, listening to book readings, buying the three-for-100 packages and going home to tell the world what they will read in the New Year — will have to take a break this year. They annual Hyderabad Book Fair is not happening this year and the pandemic is the obvious reason. The organisers bemoan that this year, the seventh one since Telangana formed, was gearing up to be a bigger event than the previous ones, but had to be called off. Says Juluru Gouri Shankar, President of the Hyderabad Book Fair, “The book fair which typically starts around the third weekend in December and ends around the New Year’s may now take place around March or April 2021. The upcoming summer holidays, when evenings are longer and the student community has more time in their hands, seems like the right time to hold it. However, we will take the final decision depending on the number of Covid-19 cases.” Did you know that the Hyderabad Book Fair is the third biggest in India? With an annual footfall of around 10 lakh people across ten days, the event held either at People’s Plaza or NTR Stadium in Lower Tankbund Road, was to be a bigger event with none other than the Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao himself promising to inaugurate it. Last year, the Hyderabad Book Fair society said it had conducted over 1,000 talks and book fairs across Telangana, in a bid to do an outreach programme and let young students from rural areas experience the joy of book readiing. “In 2019, we went to the grassroots to address school children in Khammam, Nalgonda, Warangal, Bhupalapally etc. This year also, we had over 1,200 such sessions lined up in schools and offices, but we could not do even one since March,” shares Gouri Shankar. The organising committee says that this year authors got a raw deal as events such as the book fair and the Hyderabad Literary Festival were either called off, or have become virtual events. “In the last few years, we have hosted the book launch events of doyens such as Sitaram Yechuri, actor Gollapudi Maruti Rao and Prakash Raj who knew the impact of the book fair. But alas, we may have to wait for another 100 days before we touch and smell the books,” he adds.
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