For a big city with a swish set, the number of bookstores (never mind libraries) in Delhi is village-scale. Even if one considers a large proportion of book readers buying books off the internet which they arent it wont be too much of an exaggeration to say that there may be as many if not more writers than readers of books. In this dismal situation, once in two years comes the Delhi World Book Fair. Its 20th edition starts in the capital today and runs till March 4.
The big advantage of such a fair where, unlike in Frankfurt and other international book fairs is that books are sold to the public under one proverbial roof at discounted prices. Which means that you get to see an array of various kinds of books all in one gigantic bookstore. So while itll be delusional to expect the kind of crowds who throng to the Auto Expo or other consumer fairs in the same venue, one hopes that Pragati Maidan will see you, your friends and your families go to the fair and pick up your haul of reading material.
The truth is that it is actually cool to gift books to friends and families not to mention buy, and hopefully read, them. And in case you need an incentive, the theme for this years fair is Indian cinema. Who knows, you may even catch a filmstar at Pragati Maidan even as you catch the habit of reading books.