Literature from across border entices book lovers; transit a pro

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New Delhi, Sep 3 (UNI) Literature from Pakistan is an attraction for readers at the 14th Delhi Book Fair, even as transit of books is a problem at the border.

The National Book Foundation (NBF) from across the border is promoting Pakistani literature in India since the past three years.

Mr Shaukat Ali from the Foundation, however, told UNI that its stock of books was lying at the border for clearance from the Indian authorities.

He also complained,'' Indian publishers can buy books from us, but we cannot take books from India due to strict rules. This is a hindrance in people to people contact.'' Introduction of Pakistan through books and interaction with international educational institutions through Pakistani Missions abroad is a major activity of the Foundation, which comes under the Government of Pakistan. Mr Ali said, ''We project Pakistani publications abroad through participation or representation in some major book fairs.'' ''Thousands of people have visited the stall ever since the fair opened. Books which have been selling the most are those about Pakistan, Islam and Urdu,'' he quipped.

About the difference in the writing style of post-partition Pakistani writers and the contemporary ones, he said,'' Progressive and creative writers have changed the face of Pakistani literature in the present day scenario from the post-partition era of Urdu writers.'' ''Nowadays, the progressive writers raise different issues through their books,'' he added.

About the theme of the fair being ''Women's Writing'', Mr Ali said, ''Through different promotional activities like workshops and training sessions, we encourage women and children to write in Pakistan.'' He cited Ms Shabnam Nasir's book 'The Whispering Wind', 'The Famous Forts of Pakistan' by Ms Samreen Shaukat and 'Are Women Human' by Ms Shahwar Jafri as examples of books by Pakistani women authors. Mr Ali said the people of his country loved to read books, adding that the Karachi International Book Fair would be held from December 26-30, in which the National Book Trust of India is invited to have a stall.

UNI SKB RP PM1433

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