New Delhi World Book Fair becoming the part of city culture


-says MA Sikandar
Indian publishing today stands poised at a significant crossroad towards the path of growth and New Delhi World Book Fair offers the participants a unique opportunity of doing business with this growing book industry. It is an ideal venue for promoting titles, co-publication arrangements and trade.
New Delhi World Book Fair (NDWBF) held for the past 41 years, is now a major calendar event in the publishing world. The upcoming NDWBF 2014 is scheduled from February 15 -23, 2014 at the centrally located Pragati Maidan, New Delhi. “We have received a very good response from the industry on transformation of this fair from biennial to annual one. With this increasing popularity of NDWBF, we have booked all stalls (though the exhibiting space has also been reduced as the frequency of the show now stands annual) within the stipulated time frame and as such no extension of date was required,” told the ever-energetic and enthusiastic MA Sikandar, director, National Book Trust, India, the organisers of the show. He further informed that the fair will be spread over an area of 35,000-36,000 sq m area, though the number of exhibitors would almost be the same as last year. Remarkably, in 2013, the fair attracted more than 1,200 Indian exhibitors and 31 foreign exhibitors.

NBT is an apex body of the Government of India, under the Ministry of Human Resource Development. The show is co-organised by India Trade Promotion Organisation (ITPO), the nodal agency of the Government of India under the Ministry of Commerce, for promoting the country’s external trade.

Talking about the guest of honour country at the show, Sikandar informed that Poland is the guest of honour country this time, which has a rich literature and also is home to approximately five Nobel laureates in this field. “It will be a good opportunity for both India and Poland to celebrate their relationship over the years. There will be delegation from Poland comprising of authors, illustrators, publishers, educationists and a cultural troupe as well,” he added. He further shred that NBT has already published a children book from Poland titled Little Chopin.

Besides the many literary and publishing conferences and programmes to be organized during the fair, there’s much more to expect. “We have introduced the digital ezone, wherein we have given a discussion area where digital service providers can discuss and give presentations on their offerings,” told Sikandar. “Also, the theme of the fair is Children Literature,” added Farida M Naik, joint director (Admin & Finance), NBT, India. “And this theme would be reflected not just in the children pavilion but in the entire fair. There would be a Kids Bubble as well.”
“We are expecting good response from teachers and educationists. In fact, after changing it to an annual fair, schools have started planning it before hand in their calendars,” added Sikandar. “We are trying to bring in as many schools to the book fair as possible. We are targeting 10-20 schools to send their students on each day of the fair.”

Moreover, the exhibitors and visitors can equally benefit from other regular features like Authors’ Corner, Rights Table, CEOs Speak, etc.

“The number of book readers is increasing and New Delhi World Book Fair is moving towards becoming an integral part of culture of the city,” concluded Sikandar on a positive note.

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