Indian languages fest ends

New Delhi: The curtain came down on the three-day Samanvay IHC Indian Languages Festival here Sunday with a call to renew the literary fraternity`s commitment to promoting Indian writing.

The last day saw three key literary sessions on "Women: Writing the Body", with a panel of Tamil women writers and poets deliberating on the challenges and triumphs of feminist and Dalit writing.

The session featured writers P. Sivakami, Kutti Revathi, Malti Maitri, Sukirtharani and Arshia Sattar. They said women`s bodies were often used as tools of vendetta.

A discourse on "Indian English Writing Beyond Fiction" explored the scope of the contemporary Indian literature in non-fiction.

The session, addressed by writers like Arshia Sattar, Basharat Peer, Annie Zaidi and Rahul Pandita, was unanimous in its verdict that non-fiction writers were not supported by government agencies to research for their books, which slowed down the growth of the genre.

A session on the popularity of Bengali poetry elicited a mixed house, with speakers shedding light on the trends on modern Bengali poetry and predicting its future - which they felt required more talent and encouragement.

Noted Hindi writers Rajendra Yadav, Paresh Nath, Arun Maheshwari, Neeta Gupta, Ravish Kumar and Giriraj Kiradoo debated whether Hindi literature drew adequate number of readers in the 21st century.

They felt that Hindi literature had to become more contemporary and identifiable with younger readers.

"It is our duty to raise awareness about Indian writing in languages. The Jaipur Literature Festival is the only festival which promotes Indian writing in languages. Youngsters in smaller cities know about the Nobel prize and Booker prize winners, but very few young readers in the country are aware of the Sahitya Akademi winners and their work. Samanvay will try to this gap in Indian writing," member of the IHC programme advisory committee Satyanand Nirupam, a emerging Hindi writer-editor, told reporters.

The Samanvay festival will be an annual literary event on the IHC calendar, Nirupam added.



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