Thursday, February 4, 2010

Rediscovering Nehru: Delighted readers, depressed buyers at WBF

New Delhi, Feb 3 (UNI) Aiming to rediscover Jawaharlal Nehru, an exhibit of books on and by the visionary leader at the ongoing 19th New Delhi World Book Fair here is receiving a mixed response by the Indian history lovers.

While some visitors were feeling dejected when informed that the books at the exhibit were only on display, the others were enthralled to see the film series on
the first Prime Minister of an independent India being showcased at the stall.

More than 400 books on and by the leader have been displayed at the exhibit. However, booklovers are returning home depressed on learning that the same are not for sale.

''The books should be available for sale. A week-long book fair is not enough to know about a person like Nehru,'' Sanjay Sharma, a businessman, told UNI.

Nishant Mishra, a student of BA (Hons) in History from Delhi University, was also disheartened. ''I have to make a project on the life of Nehru and the best books are
available here. However, I cannot take them home,'' he rued.

The collective exhibit has been set up by the National Book Trust, the fair organiser, with the help of Nehru Memorial Museum and Library that has houses books in various languages, including English, Hindi, Telegu, Kannada, Malyalam,
Gujarati, Punjabi, Bangla, Marathi, Oriya and Urdu.

The organisers have suggested a solution to those interested in adding the books to their collection.

''The visitors can note down the name of the book and its publisher and then buy it from the stall of the respective publisher at the fair,'' NBT assistant editor in Telegu Pathipaka Mohan said.

And in case the readers have time at their disposal, the exhibit also has a proper sitting arrangement where they can read for hours together, he added.

Books like 'Chacha Nehru' by Mulk Raj Anand, 'Don't Spare Me Shankar', a collection of cartoons on Nehru by renowned cartoonist Shankar, 'Selected Works of Jawaharlal Nehru in 39 volumes', 'Jawaharlal Nehru Centenary Volume', 'Speeches by Nehru' among others, are up for display.

Mr Mohan informed that most of the books at the exhibit have been borrowed by the Nehru Library situated at the Teen Murti Bhawan here.

Another elderly visitor, V S Ahlawat, was really pleased looking at the books on the display. ''The titles have not only talked about a statesman and a visionary leader but have equally acknowledged authors too,'' he said.

One of the other major attractions at the collective exhibit is a film series on Nehru being showcased daily. Called the 'Nehru Bioscopes', the shows have been organised by the Film Club of Nehru Memorial Museum and Library.

The films being shown include 'Nehru' by Shyam Benegal; 'Vision of Independent India: Nehru' by N S Thapa; 'Nehru: A Pictorial Biography' by G S Raina and
'Bharat Ek Khoj', an acclaimed television serial by Shyam Benegal and others.

The movie series are attracting visitors, both youth and elders, alike.

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