Ekushey Book Fair begins today

Amar Ekushey Book Fair 2022 begins on Bangla Academy premises and at Suhrawardy Udyan in Dhaka at 3:00pm today.
Bangla Academy organises the fair every year commemorating the historic Language Movement of 1952 and the martyrs who sacrificed their lives during the movement.
The fair is scheduled to continue till February 28.
Prime minister Sheikh Hasina will inaugurate the fair through videoconferencing from Ganabhaban.
Bangla Academy director general Mohammad Nurul Huda will deliver the welcome speech while state minister for cultural affairs KM Khalid will attend the inaugural ceremony as the special guest and the session will be presided over by the academy’s president Selina Hossain.
The book fair, usually held from the very first day of February to the last day, has been postponed and shortened by two weeks due to Covid-19 situation this year.
The fair was held from March 18 to April 12 in 2021.
Addressing a press conference in Bangla Academy, state minister for cultural affairs KM Khalid said that the delay in organising the fair would not harm its attraction.
The fair duration may be extended if the Covid situation improves, he added.
Cultural affairs secretary Abul Monsur said, ‘Visitors and traders will have to follow Covid guidelines properly in the fairground. All will have to wear masks and book sellers must have vaccination certificates.’
‘Mobile courts will be operated in this regard. If people violate Covid rules, they will be fined,’ he said.
He also said that visitors would need vaccination certificates to enter the food court in the fairground.
Bangla Academy’s sales, marketing and reprint division director and member secretary of the fair organising committee Jalal Ahmed said, ‘There will be arrangements of hand sanitisation and body temperature measurement at entry points. We have also arrangement for spraying water on fairground for dust management.’
‘More than 300 CCTV cameras have already been installed at the fairground and adjacent areas. Members of law and enforcement agencies will be deployed at the fair venues to ensure security,’ added Jalal Ahmed.
Fair director of Academic and Creative Publisher’s Association of Bangladesh AKM Tariqul Islam Roni said that most of the publishing houses had completed 80 to 90 percent works of setting up stalls.
In around 7.5 lakh square feet area, 776 units have been allocated to 534 publishing houses and organisations to sell and exhibit their books and publications.
There will be 35 pavilions in the fair.
Book fair authorities have allotted 142 units on the Bangla Academy ground to 102 organisations and 634 on the Suhrawardy Udyan to 432 organisations.
In Suhrawardy Udyan part of the fair, there will be four entry and three exit gates.
The book fair will be held from 2:00pm to 9:00pm every day except holidays. The fair will open doors to visitors at 11:00am on holidays and at 8:00am on February 21.
The book fair began its journey on the Bangla Academy premises informally in 1972 and it became institutionalised in 1978.
The fair was named Amar Ekushey Granthamela and guidelines for it were formulated in 1984.

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