The literary extravaganza is poised to grip Kolkata in its wintry embrace as the 47th International Kolkata Book Fair is scheduled to kick off on January 18th, extending its literary embrace until January 31st. The theme for this edition is Country, United Kingdom, unveiled during a press conference held at the Five Star Hotel on Park Street.
The inauguration promises the esteemed presence of the state's Chief Minister, Mamata Banerjee, along with distinguished poets and literati. The anticipation builds following a press conference at the Five Star Hotel, where the Publishers and Booksellers Guild announced the fair's commencement. The Guild's President, Tridib Chatterjee, and General Editor, Sudhanshu Shekhar Dey, graced the event along with Dr. Andrew Fleming, the British Deputy High Commissioner for Eastern and North-Eastern India, and Debangan Chakraborty, Director of the British Council in Eastern and North-Eastern India.
This edition's unique theme, centred on the United Kingdom, received accolades from the Chief Minister during the inaugural conference, where she bestowed artistic recognition upon publications. The Guild had recently engaged in a fruitful exchange with Spanish delegates during a global business summit, adding to the buzz surrounding the Book Fair.
Recalling the previous year's success with over 26 lakh attendees and sales exceeding 25 crore books, this year's fair boasts participation from over 2,000 publishing houses. The fairgrounds, hosting more than 300 stalls, promise a diverse literary landscape, with a substantial representation from Little Magazines.
In a strategic move, the Book Fair Board rescheduled the dates, extending the fair into the weekend with breaks on Saturdays and Sundays (January 23 and 26), acknowledging the expected surge in footfall. Dr. Debangan Chakraborty of the British Council revealed plans for a special celebration, marking 75 years of the British Council's presence in India.
Adding to the global flavour, this year's Book Fair witnesses Germany's return after 12 years. Stalls from the United States, France, Italy, Spain, and Thailand will complement the vibrant literary tapestry of India, showcasing publications from Delhi, Uttar Pradesh, Gujarat, Maharashtra, and Bihar.
A unique attraction awaits literary enthusiasts as the Kolkata Literary Festival unfolds from January 26th to January 28th, enriching the book fair experience. The cultural and literary extravaganza promises to be a celebration of words, ideas, and the profound joy of reading, providing a fitting conclusion to this grand literary carnival.