The Tata Steel Kolkata Literary Meet 2016 started off with a series of questions which were determined to make people think. But that’s the idea – literature makes people think, understand, analyse, critique, and solve. The event was inaugurated by Samaresh Majumdar and Soumitra Chatterjee, who were joined by Malavika Banerjee (Director – Gameplan) and Mr Koushik Chatterjee GED, Finance and Corporate, Tata Steel, as well as Jayanta Sengupta, Secretary and Curator, Victoria Memorial.
The event was officially inaugurated when Soumitra Chatterjee and Samaresh Majumdar wrote their names on the large canvas, and were graced with flower bouquets, and this marked the start of the 6-day event from 21st to 26th of this month. For full schedule, check out this page.
I had asked a question to Samaresh Majumdar right before the event had started, and it seemed, this was his concern as well: was the quality of regional literature deteriorating? Were people not learning their own language properly, and, as a result, were speaking and writing in a mishmash of two-three different languages, not understanding the depth of any one of them fully?
In his speech, Samaresh Majumdar questioned the quality of writing that is, and what can be done if the quality is increased. However, he also spoke about the event which was the path of hope, showing that people still wanted and liked reading. They wanted to explore and improve their reading ability, and that is what was extremely important here.
In accordance, Soumitra Chatterjee talked about the importance of literary meets – it helped people expand their literary sense as well as direction in some way – and those present for the events in the next five days would be receiving an opportunity to listen to the people who are influential in this field – and are from different backgrounds, which help them connect and understand literature, and perhaps appreciate it more. It is a space provided for literature lovers to listen and contribute to the conversation, which is definitely needed for its further growth.
And on that note, the inauguration event came to an end, and it was followed by a performance in Pashto of Rabindranath Tagore’s Kabuliwala, played by students from Kabul University. It was a rather nice rendition, complete with song and dance.
I will be blogging about quite a few events, along with my fellow bloggers. For more photos and videos, check out the hashtags #KolLitMeet and #TataSteelKalam .
Disclaimer: Poorna Banerjee is blogging in association with Kolkata Literary Meet, 2016.