Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on Wednesday urges all to encourage their children to read literature as it can prevent them from slipping into a wrong path.
"I believe that literature has the power to rescue our children from the wrong path they are following these days," she said.
Hasina came up with the call while speaking at the inaugural ceremony of the month-long 'Amar Ekushey Boi Mela' and the three-day 'International Literature Conference' on the Bangla Academy premises.
"The practice of education and literature could salvage our students and children from the wrong path and I believe that as much the practice of education and literature would be made, they would come back to right track to that extent," she said.
The International Literature Conference will begin at the fair venue on Thursday, the 2nd day of the book fair.
Cultural Affairs Minister Asaduzzaman Noor presided over the function, while Director General of Bangla Academy Shamsuzzaman Khan delivered the welcome address.
The Prime Minister also distributed the Bangla Academy Shahitya Puroshkar among the winners. Later, the Prime Minister visited different stalls of the book fair.
There will be a seminar at the main stage of the fair at 4 pm everyday from February 5-28.
As in previous years, the venue of the fair has been extended to nearby Suhrawardy Udyan with some changes.
Strict security measures have been taken in and around the book fair venue to avert any unpleasant incident during the fair.
Bangla Academy is organising the International Literature Conference to build a good bonding among local and foreign writers, poets, novelists as well as to create a platform to exchange their literary works.
'International Literature Conference Writers' Honorary Award' will be given to six prominent personalities of Bangladesh on the 2nd day of the fair.
The six personalities are National Professor Mustafa Nurul Islam, Language Movement veteran and researcher Ahmad Rafiq, Professors Emeritus Serajul Islam Choudhury , Anisuzzaman and Rafiqul Islam, and Dhaka University Political Science teacher Prof Dr Borhanuddin Khan Jahangir.
A total of 27 foreign poets, writers, intellectuals from seven countries will participate in the conference.