Mumbai: 26th National Urdu Book Fair Faces Challenges Despite Enthusiastic Student Response

Mumbai: 26th National Urdu Book Fair Faces Challenges Despite Enthusiastic Student Response

Discover the challenges and enthusiastic student response at the 26th National Urdu Book Fair in Mumbai, showcasing a rich collection of Urdu literature and cultural events. Despite location challenges, students are engaged, but stall owners face lower-than-expected footfall.

Krisha V BhattUpdated: Friday, January 12, 2024, 02:09 PM IST
article-image
Stall owners face lower-than-expected footfall at the 26th National Urdu Book Fair | File Image

Although in a bid to promote Urdu literature and culture, the Central Government’s National Council for Promotion of Urdu Language (NCPUL)—in collaboration with Anjuman-i-Islam's Dr MIJ Girls’ High School—has organised the 26th National Urdu Book Fair in Mumbai from Jan 6 to 14 at the R2 ground, Bandra-Kurla Complex, the event faces challenges as stall owners grapple with underwhelming response, mainly because of the inconvenient location and no easy access to public transport.

Despite the enthusiastic response from students enjoying the fair, stall owners are worried about the low overall footfall. 

Shahzad Alam, a stall owner, believes that the distant and hard-to-find venue is impacting the expected number of visitors.

"It is definitely hard to find this place, and most of the crowd is getting lost on their way, and the response is not what we were expecting. The business is going okay but not great”, Alam said.

He further adds, "We are hoping that more crowd turns up and comes to the fair in the remaining days, but one can only hope."

Saifee Zoher, another stall owner, cites the current generation's preference for digital content over books as a contributing factor to the lower turnout. 

"The problem also is that this generation does not like to read books and are always busy on mobile phones and the internet, so that is one of the affecting factors that not much crowd is coming here”, Zoher said.

However, he remains positive about the fair's impact on children, stating, "The business is on the sideline, but I'm just happy that some of them are here and they are buying books because we want the children to read books and develop a love for reading."

Saba Patel, the principal of Anjuman-i-Islam's Dr MIJ Girls’ High School, emphasises the significance of encouraging students to read. 

"It's not just about buying a book; we want our children to read and gain something concrete out of it. The Urdu Book Fair is an activity that aligns with our educational objectives”, Patel told The Free Press Journal.

While the students delight in the book fair, expressing their enjoyment and eagerness to visit again, concerns persist among stall owners about the fair's overall success and the lower-than-expected crowd turnout.

The book fair hosts 185 stalls offering a collection of over 150,000 books with a 10% discount.

RECENT STORIES

BITSAT 2024 Application Closes Tomorrow; Check Steps To Apply

BITSAT 2024 Application Closes Tomorrow; Check Steps To Apply

Insects Found In Mid-Day Meal Flour; UP School Issued Notice

Insects Found In Mid-Day Meal Flour; UP School Issued Notice

1196 Students Awarded Degrees At IIM Kozhikode’s 26th Annual Convocation

1196 Students Awarded Degrees At IIM Kozhikode’s 26th Annual Convocation

IPU CET 2024 Registration Ends Tomorrow; Exam To Start From April 27

IPU CET 2024 Registration Ends Tomorrow; Exam To Start From April 27

Super 30's Anand Kumar To Launch Online Platform For Underprivileged Students

Super 30's Anand Kumar To Launch Online Platform For Underprivileged Students