Second Edition of Kathmandu Kalinga Literary Festival concludes in Nepal Capital 


The 2nd  Kathmandu Kalinga Literary Festival (KLF) conlcuded at Kathmandu on September 3.   Hon’ble Foreign Minister of Nepal, Mr. NP Saud was chief guest in the inaugural ceremony on September 1, 2023. Acclaimed Indian economist, Chairman of Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s Economic Advisory Council, Writer, Dr. Bibek Debroy, linguistics Dr. Madhav Prasad Pokhrel, Chancellor, Nisha Sharma, Surya Nepal MD, Ravi Rayavaram, LIC Nepal, Deputy CEO, Mr. Tuntun Burnawal joined as Guests of Honour in the inaugural ceremony.

On the occasion, the minister expressed the hope that this event would play an important role in the exchange of culture in South Asia. It is a matter of happiness for us that the festival has been organized in Kathmandu putting Nepal at the center, he said.

“We will be incomplete if we cannot connect the culture of Varanasi with Kathmandu, Janakpur with Ayodhya, and Biratnagar with Hastinapur. It is because we (Nepal and India) are connected with each other in terms of culture and language. Our similarity is Sanskrit language”.  Artists and litterateurs from Nepal, India, Bhutan, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka have gathered at Kathmandu for the Festival.

In the inaugural ceremony The Yashaswi Sahitya Sanman conferred upon legendary Nepalese writer Dr. Madhav  Prasad Pokhrel, Indian writer Prof. Awadhesh Pradhan and actress-writer Divya Dutta. Over 400 writers from Nepal, India, Bhutan, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka joining the festival.

On the three-days program, 60 sessions were held simultaneously in two halls of Hotel Himalaya. Ranjana Niraula, director of Surya Nepal Kathmandu Kalinga Literary Festival, gave her welcome speech and thanked everyone who helped to organize the event successfully. Similarly, speaking about the program, Rashmi Ranjan Parida, the founder of Kalinga Literary Festival believed that the This edition of KLF Kathmandu is designed to strengthen the civilizational, cultural, and spiritual dialogue as well as literary perspectives in the South Asian Region. The festival will celebrate the journey of Nepal as a centre of Global Thought and it has emerged as a centre of South Asian Dialogue.

The festival hosts one to one conversation with  noted actress   Manishsa Koirala,   Dr Bibek Debroy,  noted actress and writer Divya Dutta, Padma Shri Sudarsan Pattnaik, Padma Shri Nila Madhab Panda, Padma Shri Aruna Mohanty, Promising Singer Abhilipsa Panda . Noted Odissi Dancer and  Padma Shri Aruna Mohanty  performed on the theme of Bhumisuta- The Daughter of Earth  and Promising Singer Abhilipsa Panda also performed Har Har Sambhu Bhajan.

Central Theme of the Festival will be Shakti and Bhakti – The Civilizational Connection: Nepal as a Centre of Global Thought..  Other important sessions in the three days festival are as follows;  “Ordeal of Sita: Women’s Struggle in South Asia”, “Voice of South Asia: Media and Entertainment”, “Pressing Matters: Journalism Ethics and Integrity in South Asia”, “Vibrant Visions: The Contemporary Art Movement in South Asia”, “Importance of Shakti in Eastern Cultures”, “The Role of Journalism in Literary Promotion”,  “Digital Dawn: How the AI will shape the South Asian Media”, “Challenges and Potential in Cinema in the new age of South Asia”, “Book Discussion: Kingdom Lost – Nepal’s Tryst with Democracy (1951–2008)”, “Flaming words: Poetry of South Asia”, “Living as Neighbor: Politics of Cooperation in South Asia”, “India, South Asia and Asia: New Dynamics”, “Revisiting Nepal in Indian Mystic Traditions”, “Beyond Boundaries: Women’s Empowerment and Challenges in South Asia”, “Role of Corporate for the promotion of Art, Culture, Literature and Indigenous Culture”, “Classical Dance: The Mystic Silence”,  “Sacred Rhythms and Spiritual Journeys: Celebrating South Asian Festivities and Rituals”, “Asian Identity: Bridging the Cultural Gaps”, “Mythic and Historic Realms: Deciphering South Asian Lived Experiences”, “Voices of the Valley: Political Realities and Aspirations in South Asia”, “Goddesses and Legends: The Fabric of South Asian Mythological and Historical Narratives”, “Nepal as an International Literary Tourism Destination”, “Cultural Confluence: The Melting Pot of South Asian Traditions” and others.

Writers, speakers from India are   Dr Bibek Debroy,  noted actress and writer Divya Dutta, Padma Shri Sudarsan Pattnaik, Padma Shri Nila Madhab Panda, Padma Shri Aruna Mohanty, Promising Singer Abhilipsa Panda (Har Har Sambho fame), Ambassador Ranjit Rae, Publisher Milee Ashwarya ,Vandana Rag, Prof. Awadhesh Pradhan, Yatish Kumar,   Dr. Adashya Das, Dr. Lalit Das, Kamala Kanta Dash, Kedar Mishra , Geetika Kohli and others.

Indeed, the festival’s sessions cover an extensive array of topics for reflection and consideration. The second day’s sessions included a thoughtful exploration of the relationship between Nepal and India, as well as India’s broader ties within South Asia. Suhasini Haider, the foreign affairs editor of The Hindu, and writer and journalist Kanak Mani Dixit shared their perspectives and opinions on India’s relations with its neighbouring states and the wider Asian region. Their discussions were intellectually stimulating, touching on historical, economic, governance, and political aspects, all of which influence foreign policies. The dialogue gained depth as it became evident that the speakers didn’t always see eye-to-eye—Haider emphasised the challenges surrounding India, while Dixit highlighted internal complexities within India. These differing perspectives contributed to an engaging and informative session.

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