Himalayan Literature Festival concludes

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By A Staff Reporter,Kathmandu, May 30: The two-day International Himalayan Literature Festival concluded with a stage performance of the famous poems by pioneer Nepali poet Gopal Prasad Rimal in Kathmandu on Tuesday evening.

Garden Theatre Community presented the poetry performance, and it was directed by Che Shankar.

The festival hosted by the New York Writers' Workshop in collaboration with White Lotus Bookshop Lalitpur was dedicated to the late poet Rimal who is regarded as the first modern poet of Nepal.

 Several renowned poets, authors and intellectuals from Nepal and abroad were featured in the festival held in Thamel, Kathmandu. 

Bimala Tumkhewa, Avaya Shrestha, Shailendra Adhikary, Amar Akash and Rajkumar Baniya discussed the present-day Nepali writing before the  festival concluded. “Nepali writing is now heading towards populism that is dictated by the market,” they concluded during the debate. “If we want the resurrection of Nepali literature, we must make it free from the boot of the market.”

Novelist Narayan Dhakal discussed with Pankaj Bista, a famous novelist and journalist from India. The author of the famous novel Lekin Darbaja and the editor of Samaya Samayantar Monthly opined that consumerism ruined the life of third-world people. 

Editor of Prateek Magazine and poet Yuyutsu RD Sharma talked with novelist Felicity Volk who is also the Australian Ambassador to Nepal. Likewise, journalist Deepak Sapkota discussed with Narayan Dhakal, poet Sharma, and critic Rajkumar Baniya on life and time of late poet Gopal  Prasad Rimal while Ravi Shankar discussed with Tony Barnstone, Nina Kossman, Anand Thakore and Sona Van on the topic ‘Meditation and Imagination’. Famous Nepali photo journalist Bikash Rauniyar was in conversation with Julie Williams Krishnan on the art of photography while Ravi Shankar talked to Rukmini Nair, Rochelle Potkar, K Sachitanand, Sudeep Sen, Yuyutsu Sharma and Anand Thakore on the topic Indian Letters Now.

Editor of Desh Sanchar Yubaraj Ghimire, journalist Narayan Wagley, editor of republica.com Koshraj Koirala and poet Shakuntal Joshi discussed the space of literature in Nepali media moderated by Ken Subedi. Editors Ghimire and Koirala promised to give space to literature as much as possible. In response to a comment by photojournalist Usha Titikshu, journalist Wagley said that the Nepali media are so rude because of a lack of literary flavour.

Tony Branstone talked to M Santhan, Haridarshan,  Ravi Shankar, Ken Subedi, Xiao Xioa and Jami Proctor Xu on translation tendencies while Nepali poets Anand Vijay Gurung, Bhuwan Thapaliya, Chandra Lama, Paru Timilsina, Janaki Sharma, Pratibha Tuladhar, Tejendra Sherchan, Rajani Mila, Tejen Shakya, Kripa Khanal, Birendra Shrestha and others presented their poems in English. 

At the Nepal Bhasa poetry session, Durgalal Shrestha, Suresh Kiran, Rajani Mila, Triratna Shakya, Anandraj Joshi, Sabina Maharjan, Nabin Prakash Shrestha, Arjun Nepami, Sanjayaraj Sharma, Sudheer Khwabi, Sabina Maharjan, Bina Nemkul, Hisilina Shakya, Rahena Namarmi Manandhar, Narad Bajracharya and others read their poems.

There were representative faces of present day Nepali poetry at the session 'Inaugural Nepali Poetry Reading.' From senior poets like Dwarika Shrestha and Shailendra Sakar to Sita Pandey, Tanka Upreti, Avaya Shrestha, Pramod Snehi, Shakuntala Joshi, Bimal Tumkhewa, Rami Priya, Amar Akash, Laxmi Rumba, Bharati Neupane, Laxmi Thapa and Rita Pariyar presented their representative poems moderated by TV journalist Mohraj Sharma.

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