The 27th edition of the New Delhi World Book Fair (NDWBF), which has the UAE's third largest emirate Sharjah as its 2019 guest of honour, is set to enthral book lovers from January 5 to 13 at Pragati Maidan New Delhi.
Co-organised by the National Book Trust (NBT) and the India Trade Promotion Organisation (ITPO), the Book Fair's theme is "Readers with special needs", especially children. It will be inaugurated by Human Resource Development Minister Prakash Javadekar, the organisers said.
"The idea behind the theme is to generate emotions of not sympathy but respect and equality," Baldev Bhai Sharma, NBT Chairman, said while invoking contributions of people with disabilities in arts, culture and literature.
He added that an exclusive exhibition of Braille books, audio books, integrated print-braille books and books for people and children with different disabilities will be showcased in the Fair's theme pavilion.
An International Disability Film Festival "We Care" will present around 45 film screenings from 27 countries including India, Canada, the US, South Africa, Egypt, Ghana, Hong Kong and several European countries.
Taking place in halls 7-12, the NDWBF has been organising literary and cultural events since 1972.
Despite space constraints due to "renovation and construction" work in Pragati Maidan and availability of just "22 percent" of the total space, as per ITPO Executive Director Deepak Kumar, this edition will see stalls from over two dozen Indian languages, among several global ones.
In the Fair's authors' corners - named Lekhak Manch, Sahitya Manch, Conversations and Reflections, visitors can hear literary discussions organised by major players in the Indian publishing industry, including Penguin Random House India, Niyogi Books, Pan Macmillan, Om Books International, Sahitya Akademi, Vani Prakashan and Prabhat Prakashan.
Sharjah, the guest participant, will host an array of book exhibitions, literary programmes, publisher's dialogues, book releases, poetry readings and children's activities in their pavilion.
The Fair visitors can also witness outside-the-pavilion shows of Emirati folk bands on the event's first four days in Rajiv Chowk, Qutub Minar, India Gate and even Agra's Taj Mahal.
These activities will be conducted keeping in mind the "shared interests" between Arabic and Indian cultures, said the Director of Fairs and Festivals at Sharjah Books Authority, Khoula Al Mujaini.
Another project to watch out for is a translation of 57 Arabic language books, which will be made available in Hindi, something she hopes facilitates a better understanding of Arabic writing styles, literary roots and culture.
The nine-day book fair will also present an exhibition of books related to Mahatma Gandhi, to mark the 150th birth centenary year of iconic figure.
Tickets for the book fair can be bought online for Rs 10 (for children) and Rs 20 (for adults), at the venue or online at www.bookmyshow.com, organiser ITPO said.
They are also available at 50 select Delhi Metro stations. Entry is free for school children, senior citizens and people with disabilities.
Entry gates: 1, 8, 10
Wheelchair facility: Gates 1 and 10
Paid parking facility: Bhairon Marg (free shuttles available from parking to Gate 1 and back)
Fair Timings: 11 am - 8 pm daily from January 5-13