The first-ever Patna literature festival (PLF) got underway on Saturday amid a huge turnout of noted scholars, writers and poets from different parts of India and Pakistan.
Buoyed by the show, chief minister Nitish Kumar announced the literature festival would henceforth be an annual event and part of the Bihar Diwas celebrations. A separate budget allocation would be made for it, he said.
"I will ask the culture department to institutionalise the event”, Kumar said. All help would be given to the festival provided its format and content remained the same and there was widespread people’s participation, he added.
Referring to the Jaipur Literature Festival, Kumar said when literary festivals could be organised in the land of kings and royal families, Patna, being the seat of intelligentsia and scholars, has all the reasons to host such events.
“While inviting noted litterateurs from India and abroad, the organisers should ensure that local literary figures are not ignored,” he added.
While stating he had no objection to English language, Kumar stressed on according focus to local and other Indian languages in such literary festivals.
Kumar also heaped praise on noted poet and lyricist Gulzar, who was present at the inaugural function.