Prakash Javadekar, Minister of Human Resource said, “Reading culture is a very important aspect of our cultural ethos,” while delivering a keynote address on ‘Culture of Reading and Nation-Building: Challenges in the Digital Age’ at Pragati Maidan in the national Capital recently.
“Children should read beyond textbooks,” added Prakash Javadekar. He also said that to become a good human being, one should read books.
Referring to Prime Minister, Narendar Modi’s initiative to promote the culture of reading in Gujarat, ‘Vanche Gujarat’, he said that the mission continues to move forward with campaigns like ‘Padoge to Badoge’ and ‘Pade Bharat Bade Bharat’.
On this occasion, Javadekar released the NBT Calendar, 2017 which has been prepared on the Theme, ‘Manushi –From Gargi to Bahinabai’ and NBT’s recent publications including ‘A collection of short stories’ by Odia women writers, ‘Sanskrit Alochana Ki Bhumika’ and Thiruvalluvar’s ‘Thirukurral Jeevan Path’.
He said that we presume education of women began about hundred years ago but their education began much before. The calendar reflects this rich and long tradition of women writers and thinkers since ages, from Gargi to Bahinabaias portrayed in the calendar. He added that women writers have made significant contribution in literature which is a matter of pride and honour for us.
Appreciating New Delhi World Book Fair, he said that world of books is a different world, it is a Gyan Sagar and helps us see a wider vision of the world. He desired that efforts may be made to promote it at a larger scale across schools, colleges and universities. To promote the culture of reading, Prakash Javadekar said that we need to make reading interesting and reach out to more and more people through mobile vans and reader’s clubs.
He also said that we should make efforts to bring out books other than text books in Braille to
provide access to Divyangs (handicapped) and audio books to make books interesting. He further said that there is an urgent necessity and scope for organisations under Government like Publications Division, Ministry of I&B, Sahitya Akademy under Ministry of Culture and NBT to work together and ensure synergy in their activities.
Prakash Javadekar also released the books: ‘Cyber Pathshala’ authored by Tarun Vijay and Shambhavi and ‘Reflections of the Supreme’ authored by Prof Prasanna Kumar Patasani, Member of Parliament, Lok Sabha. The book ‘Cyber Pathshala’ has introduced new words like C for Cashless, D for Demonetisation, H for Hacking etc.
Speaking on the occasion, Subhash Kashyap, noted author, said that he has a long association with the National Book Trust. His first book ‘Our Constitution’ published by NBT was released by the Speaker of British House of Commons in 1979. He added that NBT has made a remarkable contribution in promoting books and reading culture.
Earlier, Baldeo Bhai Sharma, Chairman, NBT welcomed the guests and said that books are man’s best friend. Like friends, we need to choose the right books. He also said that NBT has been putting efforts to promote the culture of reading among children and youth of India.