Poster of the festival

Gangtok, the capital city of Sikkim, will host a two-day children literary festival at the picturesque Taktse International School on June 28 and 29.

The state’s maiden children literature festival, being organised by New Delhi-based Bookaroo Trust in collaboration with the Indira Gandhi National Centre for the Arts (IGNCA), will have storytellers, authors, illustrators and poets along with three local speakers from Sikkim.

The festival is India’s first literature festival of its kind. The festival, which began in November 2008 as a solo in New Delhi has since travelled to 12 cities across India and has completed 32 editions.

59 sessions – storytelling, drama, workshops and art & craft– will be conducted in the event.

“Stories from Sikkim will have a special place in Bookaroo in Gangtok this year. We are thankful to the IGNCA North East Regional Centre, Guwahati for collaborating with us in this project. One of the main objectives of IGNCA is to promote and popularise education among children through culture.  The North East Regional Centre of IGNCA joins hands with Bookaroo Trust to fulfill this objective through the festival of children’s literature,” said Venkatesh M, festival director, Bookaroo.

“With Bookaroo coming to Gangtok, our children will have an exposure to literature that they have never had before. We are truly grateful to the organisers for this wonderful opportunity that they are bringing for the children in the hills. We hope that Bookaroo will inspire us to do something similar in the future,” said Sonam Paljor Denjongpa, director of Taktse International School:

The festival will feature Reshma Thapa Gurung, author of The Very Wiggly Tooth. She will team up with the illustrator of the book, Canato Jimo to tell the story. Chewang Dorjee Bhutia also from Sikkim, will tell the story of the Cloud Eater of Sikkim.

An additional treat for the children of Sikkim will be stories from neighbouring countries, Nepal and Bhutan, brought to them by Bandana Tulachan and Chador Wangmo respectively.

In addition, there is Kapil Pandey, singer-cum-marathoner-cum-storyteller-cum-signage creator and Bhagirathy, a first-time storyteller in Bookaroo from Chennai will add a sprinkling of shadow puppetry in her storytelling sessions.

Author Shruthi Rao, based in the US, will be at the festival to hold a session on 20 Indians who changed the world, apart from storytelling and writing workshops.

Award-winning illustrator Priya Kuriyan will hold art workshops on monsters, jungles and egg children to imagine what they would do if they had superpowers.

Those interested in the world of wildlife can go on an adventure with Deepak Dalal, the author who loves wildlife, nature, mountains, seas and forests.

Other speakers–Deeptha Vivekanand (storyteller), Kavita Singh Kale (Transmedia artist), Neetu Sharma (award winning activity and picture book author – illustrator), Praba Ram (author) , the Bhuli Art duo – Tanya Kotnala (illustrator & crafts fashion designer) & Tanya (nutritionist), Vinita Srimal Garg (Fantasy-Fiction writer), Asha Nehemiah (author of action-packed mysteries and funny stories for all ages) and Simrin Tamhane (creative writer/poet)– will share their delightful stories and art.


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