Written by Alex Michael Binoy
The sixth edition of the Pune International Literary Festival (PILF) will be held from September 28 to 30 at Yashada on Baner Road. Started in 2013, the festival’s theme this year is ‘Family: The Core of Society’.
“We have structured the festival this year to focus on co-existence and harmony, inclusiveness and variety. We have 170 speakers and over 70 sessions in five different halls on the campus, including the ‘Children’s Stream’ which we started last year,” said Dr Manjiri Prabhu, Director and Founder of the festival.
There will be a special pavilion in which sessions will be held with the families of Leena Prabhu, sister of Manjiri, social worker Vikas Amte (son of Baba Amte and brother of Prakash Amte) and actor Sanjay Khan, the last in a session titled ‘Family Film Legacies — The Khans’.
Sessions will be held on why dogs should be accepted as companions and family members. “We have a session for children where street dogs are used as therapy. They will be taught to accept street dogs as companions and not something one should be afraid of. For adults, a book about pets by Manjeet Hirani, titled ‘How to be a Human: Life Lessons from Buddy Hirani’, will be launched” said Prabhu.
When the festival started, it had no funds. Now it is one of the country’s top eight literary festivals. “The first year was a trial and error festival where we didn’t have any funds. We started getting sponsors only from the third year. We started arranging better venues and good speakers. In the first year, the footfall was at least 1,000 and last year, it was as much as 15,000,” said Pradhu.
The Italian Ambassador to India, H E Lorenzo Angeloni, will inaugurate the festival.