A "Festival of Letters"

Parul Sharma

NEW DELHI: The Sahitya Akademi is organising a weeklong "Festival of Letters" here beginning this Monday.

A series of events like exhibition, annual lecture, national seminar and an awards ceremony will be organised during the festival that ends on February 25. It will provide a platform to writers, academicians, historians, social scientists and individuals engaged in creative pursuits to share their ideas and views on society, culture, literature and history.

The festival will open with an exhibition to be inaugurated by Indian Council for Cultural Relations Director-General Pavan K. Varma on Monday.

Sahitya Akademi Awards will be presented at Kamani Auditorium the next day where noted writer Nayantara Sahgal will be the chief guest. Poets Darshan Darshi (Dogri), Gyanendrapati (Hindi), Shafi Shauq (Kashmiri), Banshidhar Sarangi (Oriya), Harshadev Madhav (Sanskrit), Mu. Metha (Tamil) and Makhmoor Saeedi (Urdu) are among those who will be honoured. There will be a ``Writer's Meet'' on Wednesday where award-winning authors will speak about their work and creative experiences. Kannada writer U. R. Anantha Murthy will deliver the annual lecture on "Five Decades of My Writings" the same day. The highlight of the festival will be a four-day national seminar on "1857 Rising: Colonialism, Literature and March to Freedom" at India International Centre.

Eminent historians, literary personalities and academicians will take part in the seminar.