The 45th edition of the Kolkata International Book Fair will begin on January 31, Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee announced on Monday, giving the green light to an annual event that did not take place in 2021 due to Covid-19.
Bangladesh will be the thematic country of the fair.
The neighboring country has decided to celebrate the centenary of Sheikh Mujibur Rahaman, the father of the nation, and the golden jubilee of his independence.
Russia was the thematic country for the 2020 edition of the fair, which was visited by nearly 2 million people.
Usually the fair lasts 10-11 days. Show organizers, Publishers and Booksellers Guild, said the length of the show in 2022 will be decided in a day or two.
As in previous years, the 2022 Book Fair will be held in Central Park in Salt Lake.
“We called a meeting on Tuesday. All of our members have been invited to attend the meeting so that we can decide on the duration of the fair, ”said Tridib Chatterjee, general secretary of the guild.
“If necessary, the fair can continue for a longer period to accommodate two Sundays,” he said.
Guild members said they were preparing for the challenge of hosting the fair by strictly adhering to the Covid protocol. Until 2020, the fair had around 600 booths for publishers and booksellers and nearly 200 for small magazine publishers.
“If we are to follow Covid standards, the space between the stalls may need to be increased. The size of the stalls will also need to be changed,” said Sudhangshu Sekhar Dey, chairman of the guild.
Senior officials from the transportation and interior departments said they will meet with guild officials soon to discuss the final plan for the fair and finalize plans for the police deployment and transport of book lovers.
Guild members said they might visit the fair site in a day or two to identify the exact space.
The 27th Kolkata International Film Festival will be held January 7-14 next year.