Vishwarang 2020: Day 3 witnessed a panel discussion on the future of arts & culture in the post-COVID world and discussions with renowned Indian writers and cinema stalwarts
Bhopal, November 23, 2020: The third day of the Tagore International Literature & Arts Festival ‘Vishwarang 2020’ brought into focus the future of arts and culture in the post-COVID world, which was followed by a conversation with the author of four best-selling non-fiction books, Sudha Menon. With sessions like ‘Tagore and Gandhi: Their Philosophies, Sensitivities and Our World’ and ‘Contemporary Concerns in World Literature’, the day was all about showcasing the rich heritage of Indian philosophers, poets and writers along with providing critical acclaim to artists from the marginalized communities across the country.
Sharing her thoughts with people who want to pursue a career in writing, author Sudha Menon said, “I have been holding my writing workshops in India for the last 10 years or more. My number one tip for anybody who comes to my writing workshop is that if you want to be a good writer, you have to be a good reader. Learn to read and consume books for breakfast, lunch and dinner; only then you should hope to be a good writer.”
The ‘Meet the Author’ sessions with renowned novelist and writer Priyamvad, who is a well-known icon of the contemporary literary scene, and with Padma Shri awardee writer Gyan Chaturvedi were the other highlights of the day.
In his session, Mr Priyamvad said, “I believe that independence, complete independence, anarchist independence is everyone's right. If the society, religion and state want to control, prohibit or mould any of your activities, it's a sin. A writer can never be conformist. A writer can never take the side of the ruling dispensation. Not only this, if you are in sync with the morals of the society, religion or the state, then you are not a writer.”
Another major session that engaged the audience was an interaction with Jacinta Kerketta, who is an Adivasi poet from West Singhbhum district in Jharkhand. The session was moderated by a Tribal poet and retired banker Mahadev Toppo and it focused on the trials and tribulations of her community in India. Jacinta Kerketta said, “Initially when I started writing, it was about the challenges and difficulties, the good things and the bad things, family problems, financial crisis faced by the tribals, the hardships and getting along with the city life. It was a different world for us. My writings and the poems I penned were based on these experiences. When I got into journalism and left urban journalism and started focussing on rural areas, then I felt enlightened. The discrimination towards the tribal people became evident and I could see it happening with my own eyes. I started reading about it a lot more and the vision definitely opens when you go deep into it. This is what gives my poems the edge and emotions that they carry.”
A discussion on ‘The Post-COVID World: Future of Arts and Culture’ was held in one of the sessions, where the speakers brought into light the current challenges of the world of art and culture owing to the COVID-19 pandemic and what needs to be done by the various stakeholders to overcome the situation.
Focusing on the celebration of Indian cinema and its artists, with the aim of displaying the essence of Hindi cinema to a global audience, an interactive session was held with Cinema Stalwarts like Raghuveer Yadav, Malini Awasthi, Piyush Mishra and Tigmanshu Dhulia.
Day 3 of Vishwarang 2020 began with an energetic performance on Kathak dance by choreographer and dancer Kshama Malviya. As the day progressed, the audience got the opportunity to witness a session called ‘Pustak Yatra/Katha Yatra’ followed by few other ‘Author Sessions’ and a session showcasing the highlights of Vishwarang UK and Australia editions.
The last performance of Day 3 of Vishwarang 2020 saw an enthralling Mushaira in the fond remembrance of renowned Indian lyricist Rahat Indori, who departed from this world a few months back. The Mushaira was performed by prominent poets and literary scholars like Sheen Kaaf Nizam, Rajesh Reddy, Wasim Barelvi, Azm Shakiri, Shakeel Azmi, Madan Mohan Danish, Nusrat Mehandi and Parveen Kaif.
Organized by Bhopal-based Rabindranath Tagore University (RNTU), in collaboration with the Tagore International Centre for Arts and Culture Bhopal and the AISECT Group of Universities, Vishwarang 2020 aims to promote Indian literature, art and culture on a global scale via discussions, discourse and more. The inaugural session of the event, which was held in Bhopal in November 2019, was a grand success and witnessed participation from over 100 artists from more than 30 countries.
Vishwarang 2020 will include 72 online sessions over 10 days on various topics of current relevance, including ‘The Post-COVID World: Future of Entrepreneurship’, ‘The Post-COVID World: Future of Healthcare’, ‘Hindi Around the World: Teaching of Hindi in countries outside India’, ‘Challenges in Literary Evaluation of Emigrant Indian Literature’ and many more. There will also be a number of ‘Meet the Author’ sessions with bestselling authors like Amish Tripathi, Ashwin Sanghi, Mamta Kaliya, Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni and more.