SIXTEENTH CONFERENCE INDO-NEPAL FICTION WRITERS KATHMANDU, DECEMBER 1-2, 2006

The Foundation of SAARC Writers and Literature, New Delhi, along with its Nepal Chapter, in co-operation with Embassy of India, Kathmandu, organised an INDO-NEPAL FICTION WRITERS CONFERENCE on December 1 and 2, 2006.

The Delegation from India comprised of eminent fiction writers and scholars including : Punjabi writers : Ms. Ajeet Cour, President of Foundation of SAARC Writers and Literature and Mr. Ram Sarup Ankhi, Hindi writers : Mr. Devinder Issar, Mr. Himanshu Joshi, Ms. Chandrakanta, Dr. Asghar Wajahat, Bangla writer: Dr. Ramkumar Mukhopadhyaya, Oriya writers : Dr. Pratibha Ray and Dr. J.P. Das, Telugu writer: Prof. Yarlagadda Laxmi Prasad, and eminent scholar Prof. Pushpesh Pant.

The eminent Fiction writers, critics, and scholars from Nepal included Dr. Padmavati Singh, Dr. Shreedhar Lohani, Prof. Narmadeshwore Pradhan, Prof. Abhi Subedi, Mr. Dwarika Shrestha, Mr. Nabin Chitarkar, Dr. Dambar Bir Thapa, Mr. Ram Dayal Rakesh, Ms. Geeta Keshary, Mr. Sanjeev Upreti, Mr. Bishwamber Chanchal, Ms. Reena Tuladhar, Ms. Banira Giri, Mr. Govinda Raj Bhattarai, Mr. Bhagirathi Shrestha, Mr. Pushkar Lohani, Mr. Dhruva Madhikarmi, Mr. Kedar Situ, and others. Inaugural Session

The session was chaired by Mr. Dwarika Shrestha, President, Nepal Chapter of Foundation of SAARC Writers and Literature.

Inaugral session: Mr. Pradeep Gyawali, Hon’ble Minister of Culture, Civil Aviation and Tourism , Govt of Nepal, Mr. Diwakar Shrestha, President, Nepal Chapter of Foundation of SAARC Writers and Literature and H.E. Mr. Shiv Shankar Mukherjee, Ambassador o India in Nepal

Pleasant and Creative togetherness and Friendship! Prof. Pushpeh Pant, Dr. J.P.Das, Prof. Yarlagadda Laxmi Prasad Garu, Minister Mr. Pradeep Gyawali, Mr. Nabin Chitrakar

The Chief Guest was Hon. Mr. Pradeep Gyawali, Minister of Culture, Civil Aviation & Tourism, Nepal Government.

The Guests of Honour were Dr. Ms. Kheya Bhattacharya, Deputy Chief of Mission, Embassy of India, Kathmandu, and Ms. Ajeet Cour, President, FOSWAL.
Hon. Mr. Pradeep Gyawali Minister of Culture, Civil Aviation & Tourism, while welcoming the delegates offered his best wishes for the success of the conference. He stated, “Through fiction people have represented their friends and foes, and more so relived their moments of sorrow. Depicted as folklores in ancient time, fiction emerged along with the renaissance in the new and conscious era as novel and realistic story writing disciplines in an innovative mode, and consequently, it played an important role in the democratic revolution to develop new consciousness and produce new actors”.

“Nepal and India since time immemorial are bound together by literature and culture. The contemporary fiction writing should on the one hand emphasize swiftness, simplicity and understanding in style and skills, while on the other it should free itself from fantasy or abstractness to be able to explore the people’s tears and pleasures, their dreams and imagination, make human relations more compassionate”. Moreover, the minister struck a meaningful note right at the beginning by saying that realistic fiction is to be preferred over fantasy for the simple reason that realistic fiction has a greater capacity for political intervention.

Ms. Ajeet Cour, an eminent writer of Punjabi fiction and the President of FOSWAL, said during the inaugural session that the purpose of the Conference was to use literature as a strategy to cross the shadow lines of the nations, and to forge friendships and connections that go beyond the borders. This purpose was amply fulfilled by the seminar as people having their roots in Bengali, Tamil, Oriya, Kashmiri, Punjabi, Nepali, Maithili, and Newari cultures communicated with one another, forged intercultural friendships and shared some light moments as well. During one of the lighter moments of the seminar Ajeet Cour admitted that she was a bit “mad,” because for unique creative initiatives,