It saw close to 3 lakh visitors and an estimated sale of 4 lakh books

Great scholars, leaders and philosophers of the bygone era and their ideas live amidst us in the form of books and reading those books is indispensable to the development of an individual into a socially responsible citizen said, M. Thirumalai, Vice-Chancellor, Thanjavur Tamil University.

Delivering the presidential address at the valedictory event of the 7 edition of Madurai Book Fair on Sunday, the VC quoted EVR Periyar who had stressed the need of having home libraries even at the cost of having a kitchen at home, as the rationalist emphasized the need for community kitchen as an alternative and also added that kitchen as a space encourages patriarchy.

Mr. Thirumalai called upon the parents to allow the children to read books apart from what was prescribed in syllabus and encourage them as reading good books develops leadership qualities and provides us with a scientific outlook.

Minister for Cooperation, Sellur K. Raju, in his special address said that the Madurai Book Fair is a boon to the youth who wish to expand their horizons.

At a time when visual media (especially soaps) have curbed the reading habit among people, book fairs like these would revive that culture of reading which is on the wane.

Minister for Cooperation further said that, even the olden day culture of story telling by grandparents have become a rarity, courtesy television.

Later, in the event the Minister distributed prizes to school and college students who emerged winners in various competitions held in connection with the book fair.

All the winners were given books worth Rs.7, 000 to Rs.3,000 according to their winning positions.

The 7 edition of book fair which was held for eleven days saw close to 3 lakh visitors and an estimated sale of 4 lakh books, biographies and self-help books were among the best sellers and 152 schools and colleges in total visited the fair said, R.S. Shanmugam, president, BAPASI, Madurai.

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