Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit of Friday kicked off the National Book Trust’s year-long celebrations of Delhi Centenary Year.

“This is the first programme that I am attending in connection with the Delhi Centenary Year celebrations and I congratulate the NBT for taking the initiative and hope that others will follow suit,” said Ms. Dikshit, while inaugurating an exhibition of paintings and NBT wall calendar based on it titled Reading Spaces.

Appreciating the innovative concept of the exhibition and the idea of weekend book bazaars floated by NBT for the celebrations, the Chief Minister offered her government’s help for organising activities that NBT plans to organise during the year.

Earlier, NBT (India) Director Satish Kumar said the Trust tried to approach the Centenary Year Celebrations from the perspective of book readers, book lovers and book creators and how they have contributed to the making of the cosmopolitan culture of Delhi.

While giving out the broad outline of NBT’s year-long celebrations, NBT Joint Director Farida M. Naik said that NBT is introducing for the first time an innovative concept called ‘weekend book bazaars’ as being a metro city, readers do not get time enough to indulge in their hobbies. “The first of such series of bazaars would be organised during the last weekend (Friday-Sunday) of March 2011.”

She informed that a special logo for the celebrations has been designed by the Trust and various other activities like seminars, exhibitions and talks would mark the celebrations.

Kumar Vikram, an editor of the Trust, who compared the programme, shared with the audience the theme of the exhibition.

Many eminent artists who have contributed to the exhibition and the calendar like Jatin Das, Gopi Gajwani, Krishan Ahuja, Niren Sengupta, Niladri Paul, Kavita Nayar, Sudip Roy, Jai Zharotia, Vasundhra Tewari-Broota were present on the occasion.

The exhibition will be on at the Nehru Bhawan premises of NBT at Vasant Kunj from January 8 to 16 daily from 9-30 a.m. to 5-30 p.m.

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