Literati Descend Upon Kashmir To Attend Three-day Festival

30 March 2015

Srinagar: A three-day literary festival 'Sonth' (spring), organised at Sher-e-Kashmir convocation centre by the state government in collaboration with a non-governmental organisation 'Lehar', is being held in Jammu and Kashmir. The grand festival, which began on March 28, is expecting over 2,000 people from the fields of film, art and literature. Outlets of government departments, including handicraft, tourism, information, cultural academy among others were also seen at the festival displaying items bearing Kashmiri art and culture. Among known faces, writer and activist Sadia Dehlvi, columnist and author Prem Shankar Jha, poet-critic Tarannum Riyaz, writers Basharat Peer, Mirza Waheed, Rahul Pandita and Jnanpith award winner poet Rahman Rahi will be attending the event. 'An attempt is being made to bring all artists together and gather their suggestions and execute the work as per their desires to be able to showcase a colourful programme presenting Kashmir in its true form,' said Rahi. Meanwhile, Dehlvi said such events provide artists an opportunity to present their respective culture and tradition in front of others. 'This is a good effort to take our culture countrywide. Discussions take place, writers meet each other, become friends, exchange their ideas. Artists get an opportunity to travel to new places and meet new people and understand their tradition and thinking,' she said. However, a local artist at the event said there was dearth of art festivals in Kashmir, denying the artists a chance to present their art, a sole mode of survival for most of them, in front of others. Rich cultural shows, folk dance and music performances would also be organised during the event. The handicrafts artisans also presented live demonstrations of their art on the inaugural day. More than 250 writers and litterateurs are participating in the festival which will have two technical sessions and a daily cultural event in the evenings.