Home Uttarakhand Urgent need to promote and preserve folk art forms: Malini Awasthi

Urgent need to promote and preserve folk art forms: Malini Awasthi


2nd Haldwani Literature Festival


HALDWANI, 13 Jul: The recently concluded second edition of “Haldwani Literature Fest” attracted several eminent litterateurs, writers, folk artists and TV and print media personalities. The festival lasted two days (2nd-3rd July) at Delhi Public School. Senior journalist Dinesh Mansera is the curator of the festival and this year it was organised in collaboration with Panchjanya, a Hindi publication of RSS, on the occasion of completion of 75 years of its publication.

Amongst the prominent names who participated in the two day festival were Padma Shri Malini Awasthi, Padma Shri Dr Yashodhar Mathpal, TV Anchors Ashok Srivastava and Richa Aniruddha, journalist Hitesh Shankar of ‘Panchjanya’, actor and senior journalist Satish Sharma of Garhwal Post, journalist Vijay Trivedi, journalist Anurag Punetha, DGP Uttarakhand Ashok Kumar, writer Shantanu Gupta, writer Sabrees, writers Laxman Singh Batrohi, Hem Pant, Kanchan Pant, Manju Pandey, Manjari Balutia, Ashutosh Singh, Preeti Bist, Pritpal Kaur, Sarjana Sharma and Sonali Mishra and IAS officer Ranvir Singh Chauhan.

Padma Shri Dr Yashodhar Mathpal, as the chief guest at the inauguration ceremony of the programme, spoke about various dimensions of the world of ancient Indian folk in his keynote address. Referring to the relation of man with the colours of caves and archaeology, Dr Mathpal noted that human beings had learnt the decoration of buildings even before the construction of the buildings. Referring to the murals found in the caves, he said that during the gradual development of mankind, the relation of colours with the humans had been certified by archaeologists to have existed even before the Stone Age. Speaking on the Bhagwat Gita, Mathpal said that the solution for every aspect of life was present in the Gita and these aspects included politics, business or architecture.

Panchjanya editor Hitesh Shankar’s conversation with playback folk singer Malini Awasthi on “Lok Kala Sahitya Satra” was very interesting. Malini Awasthi, who had lent her magical voice from folk to new age cinema, advocated the importance of the people and promotion of the culture for an evolved society and at the time the need to logically refuse the ideologies that weakened the cultural forms and beliefs. She also raised the issue of cultural degradation in the name of women’s discourse. In between, Malini also sang pieces of folk songs and also analysed them for the sake of the audience. The session concluded with Awasthi enthralling the audience with a beautiful rendition of Vande Mataram.

Writer Shantanu Gupta who has written a biography of Yogi Adityanath, young writer Sabreesh and Panchjanya editor Hitesh Shankar had a session of discussion on certain aspects of history which are misrepresented in the history books of the country. Sabarish claimed as a researcher, that Taj Mahal style of architecture was based on a temple model and also claimed that it was mentioned in several old books and that he had evidence of this. Diiscussions were also held on the upcoming books of Shantanu Gupta and Sabreesh and it was revealed during the session that both these authors had done deep research on the subjects they were writing about.

Dinesh Mansera

Editor of Panchjanya, Hitesh Shankar also had a conversation with Garhwal Post Editor Satish Sharma. The conversation began with a complex topic which mentioned the declining readership habits among the younger generations and the challenges to the print media posed by digital media. While admitting that it was challenging for the print media including the Panchjanya to keep growing in the challenging times, Shankar asserted that Panchjanya had managed to grow.

Ranvir Singh Chauhan

As an experienced writer, journalist, Sharma raised such questions which delved deep into many aspects of journalism as well as nationalism and were responded in detail and profoundly by Shankar.

Anurag Punetha

In the session “Baat Kitaboo Ki”, TV journalist Anurag Punetha had a very interesting discussion with DD News’s famous anchor Ashok Srivastava and senior TV journalist Vijay Trivedi.

Both the senior journalists spoke about how narratives were created and even fabricated over the years to suit specific political ideologies. Ashok Srivastava mentioned several incidents of interference by the previous governments, their parties and influential people on reporting his side in news agencies and mentioned topics like Gujarat riots, ban on broadcast of interview of Narendra Modi and Sonia Gandhi’s birthday. But there was also mention of sweets being distributed at DD News office. Trivedi on the other hand raised questions on those aspects which easily spoilt the hard work of the governments. The hard work of the government was termed as curd and the movements against the government as lemon, which continued to be quoted in the later sessions as well.

In an interesting literature session for women, there was a fruitful discussion between writers Pritpal Kaur, Sonali Mishra and Sarjana Sharma. Famous anchor Richa Anirudh held a session with IAS officer Ranvir Singh Chauhan on his book, “Kuch Kehna Tha Tumse and 34 Lal Bagh”. The session concluded with Chauhan rendering some of his songs. Hem Pant’s discussion with senior litterateurs Laxman Singh Batrohi and Manoj Pandey from Uttarakhand at the Kumaon Literature and Writers’ Session also evoked lot of praise from the audience.

Ashok Kumar

Anurag Punetha held a discussion with Director General of Police (DGP) of Uttarakhand Ashok Kumar on his book ‘Human in Khaki’. A discussion session was held between Kanchan Pant, Manju Pandey, Udita and Manjari Balutia, Kanchan Pant on the struggles of woman hood and how they women had often to sacrifice their talent because of their responsibilities related to housekeeping or bringing up the children.

Vijay Akela

Anurag Punetha along with local editor of Dainik Jagran, Ashutosh Singh, social media journalists from Panchjanya, Ambuj Bhardwaj and Preeti Bisht held discussion on the current media scenario.

Journalist Ganesh Joshi discussed digital literature with leading book seller from Dehradun Randhir Arora and Shailendra Pratap Singh, while Pramod Shah discussed his books with Lalitmohan Rayal and Dr Chandrashekhar Joshi.

Vaibhav Pandey along with Anshul Saxena, who made headlines on social media and Twitter, answered the questions regarding current times. There was also a dialogue between Mahesh Dutt and Manmohan Joshi on the subject of youth and literature.

“Haldwani Literature Fest’ was convened by Preeti Bisht and Swati Kapoor.