Minister holds Book Sellers' Guild responsible for fiasco

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Barrackpore, Jan 30(UNI) West Bengal PWD Minister and veteran RSP leader Kshiti Goswami today held the Book Sellers' and Publishers' Guild, the organisers of the Kolkata Book Fair, responsible for this year's fiasco.

Calcutta High Court had ruled against holding of the annual event, which was to begin yesterday, at the Park Circus Maidan. The court held that permission for the fair violated articles 14 and 21 of the Constitution and environmental rules.

Earlier, the court had ordered against holding the book fair at its traditional venue of the Kolkata Maidan on grounds of environmental pollution. This had prompted the organisers to hold the fair at Salt Lake in January 2007. Later in November they decided to hold the fair in Park Circus.

Responding to questions by media persons, after Martyrs' day function at Gandhi Ghat here, Mr Goswami said the organisers should have considered shifting the venue to a permanent location to avoid such a situation. He, however, declined to comment on the high court verdict.

''If they(the organisers) do not get any space in the city to hold the annual Book Fair, they should move to Domjur in Howrah district,'' he quipped.

UNI XC LL PL KLC1538

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