The curtains for the 10th edition of the Tata Steel Kolkata Literary Meet dropped today. This year, the event hosted over 100 speakers, artists and performers from all across the world. The six day extravaganza ended with a scintillating classical sitar recital by Ustad Shujaat Khan on the main steps of Victoria Memorial Hall.
The concluding day stared with one of the most relevant topic of recent times – maintaining mental and physical health during the pandemic period and after. Noted cardiac surgeon Kunal Sarkar and clinical psychologist and mental health activist, Ratnaboli Roy discussed mental and physical health challenges during and beyond the pandemic. In another much awaited session, Economist Shrayana Bhattacharya shared insights about her research that has gone into her latest novel – “Desperately Seeking Shah Rukh”. Next an interactive session was held with Amish Tripathi well known for his book series Shiva Trilogy. The afternoon saw noted sports journalists Gautam Bhattacharya discuss his new book titled “Tennis Laboratory” with Chinmoy Guha.
Author Ghazala Wahab, known for her writings on homeland security, terrorism, Jammu and Kashmir among others spoke with Jashodhara Chakraborti about her award winning book – “Born a Muslim”. On the East Gate Kalam Lawn, Nicolas Wild and Krishnan Srinivasan discussed and debated on the world’s warzones and our differing perceptions. In a power-packed session, Sukanta Chaudhuri and Doyeeta Majumdar discussed the impact of Dante’s Divine Comedy – one of the world’s greatest literary works on its 700th anniversary.
Nephew of Noble Laureate Rabindranath Tagore, Abinandranath Tagore was one of the most prominent artists who founded the Indian Society of Oriental Art. Abanindranath brought nationalism to Indian art in the 20th century Bengal. In view of his 150th birth centenary, a special session was held wherein Dr Jayanta Sengupta, Secretary & Curator, Victoria Memorial Hall shared that the museum at Victoria Memorial houses several artefacts of the legendary artist and they treasure the rare art collection of the artist.
Life and work of cinema maestro Satyajit Ray has been an integral part of this year’s Tata Steel Kolkata Literary Meet. Amidst a full house, while Dhritiman Chaterji read out recently published stories by Ray, Samantak Das and Pinaki De discussed about Ray’s writing gene. This was followed by Simi Grewal and Jayabrato Chatterjee sharing their experiences of working with stalwart directors like Satyajit Ray and Mrinal Sen.
Speaking at the closing ceremony, Mr Chanakya Chaudhary, Vice President – Corporate Services, Tata Steel said, “Tata Steel seeks to promote all forms of artistic pursuits that propagate creativity and original thinking. We are committed to giving back to the community, and our Literary Meets are one of the many ways in which we foster meaningful relationships. I am grateful to the people of Kolkata for the tremendous response they have given to the 10th edition of the Tata Steel Kolkata Literary Meet. The past six days have witnessed discussions and dialogue that have enriched all our lives. We intend to continue to raise the bar at the Kolkata Literary Meet and make future editions even better.”
Dr Jayanta Sengupta, Curator and Director of Victoria Memorial Hall said, “Books and conversations are the lifeblood of Kolkata, and it was heartening to see people braving the heat and coming to the Literary Meet in droves. We are already looking forward to the next edition.”
Thanking Kolkata for their overwhelming support, Ms Malavika Banerjee, Director of Tata Steel Kolkata Literary Meet added, “With the 10th edition of Tata Steel Kolkata Literary Meet coming to an end today, I am happy to acknowledge the growing popularity of this event year on year. We have ignited thousands of minds to the wonders of literature. We assure the discerning audience of Kolkata that next year’s edition will see a more irresistible spread of stories and storytellers.’