If there is something that Calcuttans eagerly wait for is the Book Fair. The event organized during beginning of the year, when one could feel the light chill of winter which is slowly going away, make for a lovely day out at the book fair. It does not stay for long so people in large groups visit it so that they do not miss out. The fair houses many publishers and organizations both local and international. Every year there is a theme and one country is picked for promoting their books, literature and culture. This year France happened to be the one chosen.
Beautiful structures representing the French heritage and culture were erected this time. There was this dome shaped structure and one would have had to go inside. Inside, there were different sections representing and showcasing the country’s literary, food, movie and similar other aspects. It was truly beautiful and mesmerizing.
Another structure that grabbed everyone’s attention was the Bangladesh book store. They had built a palatial structure which one could enter to explore the various books. At night the lights made it look so grand.
Besides the famous local Bengali publishers, there were stores of American Council, British Council and others. British Council completed it’s 70th year and the store had books and facts of its journey in Kolkata so far.
If it’s a fair, then there has to be food stalls. Various food stalls of famous Bengali confectioners and eateries were there, and people enjoyed the delicacies with same interest as they saw the books.
Book fair is for all and one can find books for all ages and of varied interests. People of various ages and from different field of profession flocked the fair. Some were there to buy books, some to see the structures and relish the sense of awe it creates. Book fair has different meaning and interest to each but every year it is visited by many with equal amount of excitement.
The dates for the next year’s fair is well decided in advance and published on net. If someone wants to visit, then he/ she can plan it well beforehand. State government also starts special busses from various corners of the city for the fair and one can easily get the information over the internet. Every year and this year too special arrangements were done to control the traffic and make adequate conveyance availability for the visitors.
Years back the fair ground was in Maidan near Victoria Memorial, but from few years it is taking place near Science City and this year it took place at Karunamoyee mela ground. Even if the venue of the fair has changed but it has been able to hold its old charm, moreover it has got better over the years.