The month-long Amar Ekushey Granthomela (Book Fair) 2021 will be held this year in a traditional way not virtually.
A proposal will be sent to the Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina proposing Feb 20, Mar 7 and Mar 17 as possible date to commence the book fair, State Minister for Cultural Affairs KM Khalid said on Sunday (Jan 17).
He was addressing a special press conference at Shamsur Rahman Seminar Room at Bangla Academy premises after holding a meeting with publishers, local media reported.
KM Khalid said, “Today we have discussed how we can organise the book fair in the fastest possible time if the Covid-19 situation get controlled or the vaccination is commenced in the country. However, we decided to organise the fair physically, not virtually.”
“We have been planning to commence the fair from Feb 1, but it’s getting impossible. Now, we want to end the fair before Ramdan, to be started from Apr 12, and thus we will give proposal to premier with three congenial dates,” he added.
Earlier, a meeting of publishers was also held with State Minister for Cultural Affairs KM Khalid and Director General of Bangla Academy Habibullah Siraji in the morning.
Replying to a query of journalist whether the fair will be start from Feb 20 or not, the minister said’ “We can start the fair on Feb 20, if the Covid-19 situation get under control or vaccination is started by the time. Otherwise, it will not be possible to start the fair before March.”
Director General of Bangla Academy Habibullah Siraji said, “We are ready to start the fair on any three dates. However, we will be waiting for the approval from premier as it now depends on her consent”.
“If the premier allows us, we will commence the book fair from Feb 20 with special management to hold the spirit of Amar Ekush, though it will be a little bit difficult for us,” he added.
Earlier, Bangla Academy had announced to organise the fair virtually instead of traditional way considering the pandemic situation. However, some authors and publishers gave consent while some others disagreed with the decision.