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First Ever ‘Andaman Literature Fest’ Gets Underway

Serene Beauty of A&N Islands Makes it a ‘Writer’s Paradise’: CS


Port Blair, Oct. 22: The first ever three-day ‘Andaman Literature Fest’ organized by the Department of Art & Culture, A&N Administration with the support of Kala Kendra Society began on a euphoric note in the conference hall of Megapode Resort here today. The Chief Secretary (i/c), A&N Administration, Shri Vikram Dev Dutt inaugurated the Festival amidst a gathering comprising of the Secretary (IP&T), Dr. Pooja Joshi, other senior officers of the Administration and a good number of literati and academicians from the Islands besides college students. The five authors from the mainland viz. Kiran Manral, Debeshi Gooptu, Bijal Vachharajani, Sejal Mehta and Rohan Chakravarty are participating in the three-day festival.

In his introductory address, the Chief Secretary (i/c) remarked that no canvas is complete without a writer’s footprint and India has developed quite a reputation for ‘Literature Fests’ over the past one decade or so, which in the age of technology and smart phones, warms the heart. Hailing the serene beauty of the Islands, the Chief Secretary stated that A&N Islands is a ‘writer’s paradise’.

Extolling the five authors from mainland for their wealth of experience across genres, the Chief Secretary mentioned that the common thread among them reflects their sensitivity towards nature, biodiversity and the environment, which is like ‘manna                                                                                                                                                                                                                          from heaven’. “While we look at travel writing, tourism, and development with all its connotation and aspects, we would like to be responsible and sustainable and preserve this pristine territory”, added the Chief Secretary. He also complimented the Art & Culture Department for organizing this well planned event by involving the local writers and talents, who will be exposed to the various opportunities in the world of writing through the interaction with the visiting resource persons.

Earlier, welcoming the gathering, the Secretary (IP&T) Dr. Pooja Joshi said that the objective of organizing this event is to encourage the Art & Culture Department in taking up a literature festival on a regular basis. The most interesting facets of life is that we don’t live life by only economics; we actually live life by our concepts, believes, the values we hold true and our roots through which we identify ourselves. The A&N Islands are like heaven and we need to showcase this through our own expressions and folklores, she said adding that the legends of Andaman & Nicobar Islands need to be portrayed in all the festivals and taken to the world.

The inaugural event culminated with the vote of thanks proposed by the Director (Art & Culture), A&N Administration, Ms. Shimray Asaiwo Bellrose.

Later, an introductory talk by the Principal, JNRM, Dr. Francis Xavier was held besides talk on online publishing by Debeshi Gooptu, a workshop on short story writing. 

The post lunch session had panel discussion on Indian writing and publishing by Kiran Manral, Bijal V and Debeshi Gooptu followed by interaction with the audience. The festival will continue upto Oct 24 at the same venue. An exhibition of books authored by the visiting writers besides other books is being put up at the programme venue.

  • Written by Denis Giles
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