A month long book festival of books in English began Sunday at Pathak Shamabesh Centre in the city’s Shahbagh area.
Penguin Random House, a global giant in publishing owned by Germany’s Bertelsmann corporation, and local house Pathak Shamabesh are jointly organising the festival with the aim to encourage Bangladeshi writers to write in English.
Director General of Bangla Academy Shamsuzzaman Khan said that readers from all over the world are deprived of the chance to read Bangladeshi literature for the lack of translations of a sufficient standard into global languages such as English.
Alokesh Bishal of Penguin Random House’s Indian subsidiary, said that their presence in Bangladesh is not for commercial purpose. “It will give readers of Bangladesh a huge chance to see so many books under one roof. There are many talented writers in Bangladesh. If they start writing in English, they can reach their literature to the world.”
“We will hire some of the translators from Bangladesh. Alongside we will encourage the Bangladeshi writers to write in English as we can publish their book internationally,’’ he also said.
A total of 3000 books will be exhibited in the month-long festival, and 25 percent discount will be offered on Penguin Random House books.
Head of editorial team of Pathak Somabesh Wahidul Haque delivered the welcome speech while professor of Dhaka University Syed Manzoorul Islam presided over the inauguration of the book fair.