Day 2 at the Best Exotic Indian Literary Festival – Poets and Authors Go Regional


Bound to be even more charming, day two at TGILF was at THE Best Exotic Marigold Hotel, where we could listen to memorable topics like ‘Digital Media vs. Print Media’ and ‘Are Onliners the Future of our Literature’?

The tired faces of those who woke up at seven in the morning to begin the 2nd day of the Great Indian Literary Festival turned super stunned when the 90-minute-long bus journey took them to the Best Exotic Marigold Hotel located on the outskirts of Udaipur. Yes, the same resort where the movie ‘The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel’ was shot. The 400-year-old palace is continuing the traditional legacy of Khempur’s chieftain in the form of a hotel now. The city of lakes, Udaipur, certainly has an excellent atmosphere, and the organisers of the TGILF did bank on these traits. So while the second half of the 1st day was shifted into the lap of nature, the 2nd day was wrapped up in the charm of royalty and heritage.

Regarding the content, yes, the intimacy was prolonged on the second day too. While the 1st day covered a cosy tête-à-tête with Katie Dubey on her uncle Mulk Raj Anand, the 2nd day commenced with a one to one conversation with Sumitra Pant, daughter of the famous poet Sumitranandan Pant. It was, moreover, an informative session where the audience was exposed to the hidden life of Pant – as father, as lover – as more than just as a poet.


The major highlight of the day was taken over by the discussion ‘Bury The Pulp’ – an overall conversation on whether it is justifiable to call the Pulp Fiction genre serious literature, and if not, then whether it ought to be eradicated completely. During the whole conversation, there came a time when the audience could literally detect the supportive and not so favourable groups. The panel included authors and screenwriters Renu Kaul, Siddhartha Upadhyay and Priya Narayanan and senior Bollywood film writer Mahendra Jakhar, who expressed his views saying, “The word ‘Pulp’ came into existence during the Second World War. It became popular when a shortage of standard paper hit the publishing industry, and the novels began to be printed on pulp paper. One cannot bury the Pulp, because even though the genre has never been acclaimed with a Man Booker Prize, it is one of the highest selling genres, not only in India but across the world. We talk about making people and our young audiences incur a reading habit – well, that’s what Pulp Fiction is doing. Talking about rosy thing in a way that can be understood by every layman is what Pulp caters to. Raj Kumar Hirani’s Lage Raho Munna Bhai could quickly explain to me the ideology of Gandhiji, as compared to Richard Attenborough’s Gandhi.”

The second discussion that also surfaced as an enriching debate was on ‘The Dying Art of Writing’. Delegates talked about how Social Media one liners are eating away traditional exhaustive literature. And out of all the panellists, Gujarati author Hemant Dave beautifully backed up the new writing genres saying, “If one-liners aren’t a part of literature, then will we remove the Dohas (a rhyming couplet) of Meera Bai, Bihari and Kabir? Aren’t they a brilliant aspect of our traditional literature?”

The third topic ‘Digital – The New Platter’ talked about how Kindle doesn’t appear likely to replace libraries anytime soon. Since the whole gathering’s motive was to promote Regional Writers and Literature, it would have been more interesting to hear about how digital mediums are uplifting the regional language fraternity?

With such an enchanting experience, Amit Shankar, the founder of TGILF, plans to go international and expects the festival to reach Nairobi and London by 2018. We look forward to more such enriching events that dedicate their efforts to uplifting the local lingos and authors, as there aren’t many platforms that are working on this aspect, Team CY compliments people behind TGILF for putting their energies in this direction.

Read TGILF Day one review here.

Images Courtesy : TGILF FB Page

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