The much awaited India’s first festival celebrating Children’s Literature – Bookaroo came to Delhi Public School, Srinagar on the May 11 & 12, 2013. The festival per se was an encouragement of reading habits in youngsters. The aim was an exposure to books for pleasure without any didactic references. This was achieved through exciting activities with story tellers, authors, illustrators and theatre artists. Not to forget was a fantastic bookshop Eureka to browse in. Both the days, the festival was organised from 9:30 am to 5:00 pm. Various attractively decorated venues were used for this purpose. The children were bubbling with excitement at the thought of encountering their personal favourites. They had already been familiarised with the participating artists through various pre Bookaroo activities such as designing a book cover, collage making, scrap books with author profiles etc. Some of the authors who participated were Rosemarie Somaiah, AAbid Surti, Shamim Padamsee, Bikram Gosh, Sampurna Chatterjee gripped the attention of these young listeners with their amazing stories, autobiographical and fictional Bittu Sehgal was very successful with his documentaries related to environmental issues. Kala Ramesh imparted the tricks of creating Haiku poetry. Ankit Chadha and Fouzia were applauded time and again for their ‘Dastan-Goi’. The Doodle wall, crafty corners, Mazing miscellany and the recycling corner was a haven for the ones with artistic bent. Sessions with Ajit Narayan, Kartik Sharma, Nina Shabnam, Indu, Hari Kumar left the audience spellbound. Some of our local authors were invited to participate such as Dheeba Nazir, Ayub Sabir and Inayat Gul. This was to add a local flavour to the event.
The event as a whole was a great success with each student and teacher participating with great gusto. Team Bokaroo and the school is already looking to the event next year.