Bangladesh's largest annual book fair kicks off in Dhaka


Bangladesh's largest annual book fair kicked off in the capital Dhaka though belatedly due to the COVID-19 pandemic. A total of 800 stalls were allocated to about 500 organizations this year.

Bangladesh's largest annual book fair kicked off in the capital Dhaka on Tuesday though belatedly due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The book fair, with the theme of "We want a COVID-free Bangladesh," brought together many readers and writers to celebrate the event for literature.

A total of 800 stalls were allocated to about 500 organizations this year, Jalal Ahmed, member secretary of the book fair management committee and director of Bangla Academy, told journalists earlier.

According to him, the book fair is held in compliance with COVID-19 health guidelines and none will be allowed into the fair without wearing a face mask and sanitizing hands.

The book fair used to begin on the first day of February but this year it was postponed to Feb. 15 due to the COVID-19 situation in the Asian country.

Calls for extending the duration of the fair have grown as publishers are afraid of facing losses if the month-long book fair is reduced to 14 days.

"As this time we've started the fair belatedly, Feb. 15, I think we can continue it for a month," Bangladeshi Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina said when virtually inaugurated the event.