Digital pages have replaced pages from old books in today’s tech world. With book shelves gathering dust from neglect, a unique initiative in Saligao, the Pustakachem Fest aims to revive the joy of reading. Organized by the Saligao Institute, in association with Made in Saligao Market group, the festival showcases Goenkarponn (goanness) and Asmitai (identity) in the form of Goan food, sweets, seasonal fruits, and Goan music.
The day-long event on 19 April from 11 am to 8.30 pm will host numerous programs like interviews with authors, workshops, sessions for children, sale of new and second hand books, book releases, etc.
Co-organizer, artist, and author Clarice Vaz says, “The highlight is the release of Dayanita’s book. Being authors ourselves, Bina and I know a few authors/ writers and book store owners. We approached them.”
While people enjoy content, the need to use imagination, learn phrases and spell are compromised. “Reading a digital book isn’t the same as reading a real book because one can easily switch over to social media, online games, etc. The attention span is decreasing,” she notes.
Vaz tells that artist and author Bina Nayak, a regular at the Tuesday market headed by Aquilla Fernandes and team, felt that a ‘book festival on a Tuesday would help increase footfalls to this vibrant market.’ “It would help many authors sell their books and bookstores and publishing houses shutting down out of lack of business. Importantly, Bina realized that people are hooked to their tablets and now turning eReader,” explains Vaz.
Thus, the idea for a book festival emerged.
The weekly vibrant Tuesday market will also run alongside with fresh local produce, home-made food items, hand crafted gifts, and more on display.
Participating Authors & Book Stores:
Dayanita Singh, Heta Pandit, Tomazinho Cardozo, Clyde D’Souza, Pantaleao Fernandes, Joseph Fernandes, Anita Pinto, Alexyz, Salil Chaturvedi, Rev Fr John D’silva, Pragya Bhagat, Rochelle Pereira, Bina Nayak.
Bookshops and organizations, like the Dogears Bookshop, Literati Bookshop, Dalgado Konknni Academy, Broadway Bookstore, Goa1556, The Reading Planet Library and Bookstore, Out Of Context Book Club, Rama Harmalkar (Qurate Books) and various others will also participate.