Shillong, Nov 21: Chief Minister, Conrad K Sangma, today, inaugurated the 2nd Edition of Shillong Literary Festival, 2022 at Ward’s Lake, Shillong.
Addressing the gathering, Chief Minister, Conrad K Sangma, said that it was the plan to have the festival as an annual calendar event since 2018-19 but due to the COVID it was launched only last year.
“However it is a huge improvement from the 1st Edition as we move along I hope that this will become one of the best festivals not just in India but globally,” he said. He added that the Literary Festival is to celebrate the authors, writers and also to inspire the young budding authors and writers especially the young students to ensure that the habit of reading and the interest into literature grows.
“This festival will also allow you to meet different writers, listen to them, and one to one really interact with them and these interactive sessions can leave a very strong memory and a strong impact on your mind,” he said. He added that the event would project Shillong as an activity based tourism destination. “ The policies and programs of the government work towards trying to make Shillong and Meghalaya a high end tourism destination which we feel that we have a huge potential in,” he added.
The Chief Minister said that efforts are on to take the State forward with a goal of making the State among the Top 10 States in the coming years. “To be able to do that requires us to do things that are meaningful in different sectors like Sports and Youth Affairs, Tourism, Health, Education, Agriculture,” he said.
He further said that challenges like urbanization with its inherent problems like traffic, pollution, deforestation, drug menace among the youth, environmental issues are the challenges that the State faces and urged the writers to look at these issues reflect it in their writings so that people of the country and the world will be able to connect to these issues.
Addressing the youth who had attended the festival in large numbers the Chief Minister said the youth is another very important aspect for the government. “I am so happy to see so many of the young people here today and this has been done for you. I want to tell you that I strongly believe that you are the greatest strength of this nation and I want to ensure that we give you the opportunity to be able to be shaped in the right manner in Sports, Music or Fashion,” he said.
He further added that the different programs and festivals are not just events but part of a much bigger plan to take the State forward and allow the youth to engage, shaping them in the right manner.
The three days Literary Festival celebrates literature, culture not only of Meghalaya but diverse cultures and traditions and provides citizens an insight into the rich art forms. It also provides Children and Youth engagement with writers, artists, film makers and eminent personalities. The festival also has numerous bookshops.