U R Ananthamurthy, North East issues to hog limelight at Bangalore Literature Festival

It’s time for another edition of Bangalore Literature Festival! Starting today

Bengaluru: It’s time for another edition of Bangalore Literature Festival! Starting today, literature buffs from across the city will make their way to Crowne Plaza to attend the three-day festival that has grown immensely popular. Now in its third edition, the BLF 2014 has been dedicated entirely to the memory of Karnataka’s literary giant U R Ananthamurthy.

Both stages have been named after two of URA most popular novels - Samskara and Suragi. The Karnataka Chalanachitra Academy is organising a photo exhibition on his life, while a documentary on the same subject, made by the Sahitya Akademi will also be screened. The focus this year is on issues surrounding the North East, the role of women in Indian society and the controversial Article 377, pertaining to the Lesbian Gay Bisexual Transgender community.

BLF founder Vikram Sampath was noticeably on edge as the sheets of rain came down on the city on Thursday night. “I’m totally nervous,” he laughs. “The rain gods are threatening mischief, it seems, but we always have the contours of a solution in mind! Right now, though, prayer is a good option!” His nervousness belies the actual popularity of the festival, which has been packed on all three days over the last couple of years.

The venue might seem daunting - getting to crowne Plaza means braving the torturous traffic to Electronics City!

However, this hasn’t stopped people before and the BLF founders are determined to keep it that way. They have tied up with BMTC to ensure that special shuttles ply over about eight routes across the city, to and from Crowne Plaza. BLF has taken on a definite North Eastern flavour this year, which ranges from the literary participation to the street food stalls, which will feature favourites like momos this year.

However, the stalls will continue to pay tribute to Karnataka street food, so piping hot masala dosas, chaats and filter coffee are very much on the menu. Authors Girish Karnad, Chandrasekhar Kambar, Chetan Bhagat, Shobhaa De, Binalakshmi Nepram and Vikram Sampath will inaugurate the festival at 10 am on Friday, along with a Kamsale (folk art performed by the devotees of Lord Mahadeshwara) performance - a tribute to Karnataka folk culture is customary at BLF.

The festival also boasts an excellent musical lineup this year, which includes Oscar nominated singer Bombay Jayshree on Friday and Shubha Mudgal on Saturday.
Arun Shourie, Girish Karnad, Shubha Mudgal, Rajiv Malhotra, Swapan Dasgupta and Sankarshan Thakur will bring the festival to a close with an explosive (we hope) discussion titled ‘A Country Gagged & Bound?’

( Source : dc correspondent )
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