On the second day of Karachi Literature Festival (KLF) 2018 on Saturday, thousands of literature lovers thronged to the venue of the festival and actively participated in the events.
People of all ages attended the festival, including avid readers, writers, academics, and literary figures from across Pakistan and the world for the second day of the festival, which began on Friday at the Beach Luxury Hotel.
Oxford University Press Pakistan Managing Director and KLF Founder/Director Ameena Saiyid said that KLF is a mini-university for the youth.
The day started with the session titled ‘Home Fire: Rosinka Chaudhuri in conversation with Kamila Shamsie’. Home Fire was longlisted for the prestigious Man Booker Prize and has garnered international acclaim. Centered around a British-Pakistani family torn apart by a conflicted past, this novel features themes that are very relevant today. The audience heard interesting commentary about Pakistani writing in English, the Pakistani diaspora in Britain and much more.
The book launch for ‘Remnants of a Separation: A History of the Partition through Material Memory’ by Aanchal Malhotra had a panel consisting of Aanchal Malhotra, NazIkramullah Ashraf, Shahnaz Aijazuddin and Reema Abbasi with moderator Saif Mahmood.
“When you are born in India or Pakistan, you cannot separate yourself from the partition,” said Aanchal Malhotra.
Shahnaz Aijazuddin pointed out, “In Harry Potter, wizards use everyday objects and magic to transport them to another place. In Aanchal’s book, she has used ordinary objects to transport herself back in time.”
In the session ‘#MeToo: Gender issues today’, the speakers Aurélie Salvaire, Kami Chouhdry, Haris Gazdar and session moderator Bina Shah discussed the burning gender issues.
At the book launch of ‘A Thousand Cups of Tea: Among Tea Lovers in Pakistan and Elsewhere in the Muslim World’, Jurgen Wasim Frembgen sat with Arfa Sayeda Zehra to discuss his book. Arfa Sayeda Zehra moderated the session.
Maheen Zia, Arieb Azhar and Pervez Hoodbhoy had a healthy discussion in the session ‘EACPE Video Competition: Fostering Tolerance in Pakistan’.
In the session ‘The Power of the Individual Story: Pakistani Women’s Autobiographies’, Attiya Dawood, Azra Abbas, Samina Rahman and Kishwar Naheed sit with Kesho Scott.
In the session ‘Can Art and Culture Save the City?’ Durriya Kazi, Sania Saeed, Faraz Hamidi and Yawar Jilani sat with moderator Naila Mahmood.
“City making is a complex task especially if you bring culture into it. City making needs a conscience, an understanding of history,” said Yawar Jilani on architecture and public spaces. He added, “This process of engagement and dialogue. Our city has no planning authority. It’s headless. There is no institution to have dialogue or a thought process about which direction Karachi should be headed.”
Sania Saeed said that “I was born during the time of dictatorship so we were just thrown into democracy. We didn’t know what to do because we were told what to do and what not to do. So we never saw political dialogue.” She added, “Theatre has a respectful engagement of the presenter and audience it is non-threatening and non-confrontational and more engaging and has a longer impact and if it can be continued then it reflects more positively in people’s attitudes. However, art doesn’t come under the politicians’ radars, which has allowed us to get away with a lot of things.”
A short play titled ‘Chup’ which was directed by Sunil Shanker with Fawad Khan, Bakhtawar Mazhar, Kaif Ghaznavi, Sunil Shanker and Erum Bashir as the cast was presented and was much admired by the crowd.
In the session, ‘Reality catches up with Satire’, Zarrar Khuhro, Fasi Zaka and Nadeem F. Paracha were the panelists and the crowd took special interest and were fully thrilled by the thought-provoking discussions.
‘Khayal: An Evening of Indian Classical Singing’ by Amit Chaudhuri, accompanied by Yousuf Kerai on the table also entertained the crowd.
Documentary screening of ‘Don Akhbar’ and Discussion on Lyari’s Local Media was well presented by Dostain Baloch, Zia Rehman, Waheed Noor with Nida Kirmani
The evening ended with Arieb Azhar’s Concert along with Mushaira that was attended by poets including Iftikhar Arif, Inaam Nadeem, Afzal Ahmed Syed, Ajmal Siraj, Anwar Shaoor, Aqeel Abbas Jafri, Fatema Hassan, Harris Khalique, Irfan Sattar, Khwaja Razi Haider, Kishwar Naheed, Nasira Zuberi, Peerzada Salman, Salman Sarwat, Sarwat Zehra, Shahida Hassan, Tanveer Anjum, Usama Ameer Shaikh, Waheed Noor and Zakia Ghazal.