Row over NE Book Fair
GUWAHATI, Sept 2: Over the last two decades, the All Assam Publishers and Book Sellers Association (AAPBSA) has been holding the North East Book Fair at Assam Engineering Institute (AEI) playground at Chandmari in Guwahati. All these years the Association has been organizing the fair between November 9 and November 20. This year too the AEI authority granted permission to the AAPBSA to hold the fair on the said dates. However, later the AEI authority denied permission to the Association to organize the fair on the said dates citing that the field was engaged till March.
Interestingly, the problem arose after the Publication Board Assam wanted to hold the Children Book Fair around the same time at the AEI playground.
Meanwhile, the AAPBSA has decided to approach the court against the concerned authorities, including the AEI authority for justice. On the other hand, the intellectuals and other well wishers of the publishers and book sellers’ association have criticized the Government and the AEI authority and have extended support to the Association’s decision to avail the legal option. In this regard, the intellectuals organized a protest programme on Saturday.
In the meantime, the Publication Board Assam has conveyed the assurance that with the Children Book Fair ending on Nov 14, the field would be vacated. However, the AAPBSA has refused to accept such terms.
Presently, local MLA Atul Bora today wroye to the Chief Minister asking for his intervention in the matter. In his letter, Atul Bora urged the Chief Minister to take the initiative to facilitate the AAPBSA to hold the North East Book Fair as per its original schedule. Through his letter, Bora also told the Chief Minister that over the last 20 years the North East Book Fair was being held at the AEI playground on the specified dates and that there was no reason of not granting permission this year too. The local MLA also added that such book fair is a necessity for the society.