The eighth Dhaka Literary Festival (DLF), the biggest literary festival in South Asia, has been inaugurated on the historic grounds of Bangla Academy in Dhaka on Thursday (Nov 8).
More than 200 local and international literary figures, media personalities and intellectuals representing 15 countries will be making an appearance at the festival.
Cultural Affairs Minister Asaduzzaman Noor inaugurated the three-day festival at an overcrowded Abdul Karim Sahitya Bisharad Auditorium.
DLF Directors Sadaf Saaz, Kazi Anis Ahmed and Ahsan Akbar were also present at the inauguration ceremony.
During his inauguration speech, Asaduzzaman Noor welcomed everyone attending the festival and said, “The Ministry of Cultural Affairs is proud to be a part of Dhaka Literature Festival.”
Reminiscing about old times, the minister said, “Bangabandhu believed in creativity and knowledge and always prioritised culture.”
The event was begun with elegant Kathak dance performances. Kathak dance artists Munmun Ahmed and Aparajita Mustafa performed several dances prior to the inauguration ceremony.
Since 2012, the country’s biggest literary extravaganza has been organised every year at Bangla Academy, with a view to promote Bangladeshi literature and cultural heritage in the global arena and create a bridge between native and international literati.
This year’s line-up features Pulitzer Prize-winning author Adam Johnson, Bengali literary icon Shirshendu Mukhopadhyay, winner of the Commonwealth Writers’ Prize Mohammed Hanif, winner of the Ondaatje Prize Philip Hensher, winner of the Orwell and Ondaatje prizes James Meek, popular Indian author Jaishree Misra, Novelist and London National Academy of Writing Richard Beard, Indian writer Himanjali Sankar, Writer Mitali Bose Perkins, Wall Street Journal Asia Chief Hugo Restall, US journalist Patrick Winn and writer and journalist Nishid Hazari.
Award-winning Indian actor Manisha Koirala, Oscar-winning actor Tilda Swinton and award-winning actor and filmmaker Nandita Das will also grace the three day festival.
Syed Manzoorul Islam, Imdadul Haq Milon, Kaiser Haq and Selina Hossain will also take part in the festival.
On the second day of the event, Gemcon Literary Awards will be announced with the launching of Cambridge Short Story Prize scheduled on the same day.
Dhaka Tribune and Bangla Tribune are the Title Sponsors of the event, with BRAC Bank Ltd as Key Sponsor. Energis is the Gold Sponsor and British Council, a Strategic Partner.
Online registration will remain open till the last day of the festival at www.dhakalitfest.com/register/