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Bhubaneswar Literary Meet

Celebrating the immense richness of Odisha, the Tata Steel Bhubaneswar Literary Meet (BLM) was launched in 2016, with the inaugural edition held at the Lalit Kala Akademi on January 9 and 10, 2016. This year on January 20 and 21, 2017, at the Trident, joined by a host of new ones, as Tata Steel BLM returns in a bigger and even more inclusive avatar.

The idea was to pay homage to the best of Odia literature, because Odisha is culturally among the richest states of India and it has always been at the forefront of iconic works of Indian literature. For more details click here

Event Highlights

Highlights of the Day

The second edition of Tata Steel Bhubaneswar Literary Meet (TSBLM) was inaugurated on January 20, 2017, by Ms Nayantara Sahgal in the presence of Mr Anand Sen, President, TQM and Steel Business, Tata Steel, Mr Soumya Ranjan Pattnaik, Editor, Sambad and Mr Anant Mahapatra, renowned theatre personality. The two-day meet will witness participation from over 40 renowned writers and novelists. The Tata Steel Bhubaneswar Literary Meet is in alignment with Tata Steel’s corporate philosophy of encouraging and supporting initiatives that aim to foster and encourage intellectual and cultural pursuits in society.

Mr Anand Sen

Ms Nayantara Sahgal

"Tata Steel’s journey with the state of Odisha spans more than a century. Besides, all our social engagements here, it is our endeavour to partner literary pursuits such as this. We hope that this event will grow in proportion and become a must- attend for the literature enthusiasts."

"Writers and their writings come in all shapes and sizes. While some can spin one novel a year, others take years of inspiration to pen a line. We have a great responsibility as writers to shoulder this country’s future as a secular republic."



Boria Majumdar at a session: Where does Test Cricket stand in a market like India where most people want something quick? 

We live in a country which calls itself the nerve centre of the cricket world. In order to come up to this level, we began with appreciating all formats of cricket, including the Ranji Trophy. Therefore, to say that India only wants things that are quick is undermining the potential of various cricket lovers, fans and enthusiasts alike.

India @70: in conversation with Ms Nayantara Sahgal
The session began with a question on India coming out of the resilience by choosing to write on its independence. Mr Nagarkar recalls the moment in history where people were raising their voices; which however got unheard due to the Emergency. Ms Nayantara Sahgal spoke about personal, political and cultural differences and how those subjects crept up when one wanted to put pen to paper as an author. From the inception of Stardust to the twisted views of the sociologist of the present era, Kiran Nagarkar takes a light-hearted jab on the murkier side of the Indian society and the Indian psyche. When a question was raised regarding the influence of English language being a threat to the survival of vernacular language, his answer in the negative. The session concluded with the panel agreeing to the fact that the progress of the vernacular language and English ran parallel to each other.

Coming up on Saturday, January 21, 2017:
11:30am: Man on Fire: Stephen Kelman and Bibhuti Nayak
3:30pm: Sizing up a Story: Kanishk Tharoor and Paramita Satpathy
5:30pm: The Great Derangement: Amitav Ghosh 

Sizing up a Story:
Kanishk Tharoor and Paramita Satpathy on the challenges of the short story, the novella, and the novel. In conversation with Malavika R. Banerjee

Future Tense:
Debi Prasanna Pattanayak, Nivedita Mohanty, and Dash Benhur, on whether Odia literature is equipped for digitisation and the growth of English, in conversation with Gourahari Das

The Great Derangement:
Amitav Ghosh takes stock of the dangers that climate change poses to India’s coastline, in conversation with Kanishk Tharoor

Highlights of the Day

Brainstorm with Bagchi

The second day of the Tata Steel Bhubaneswar Literary Meet began with a power-packed session with Mr Subroto Bagchi, co-founder, Mindtree, having a candid discussion with the young minds and students of Odisha on the scope of various educational institutes and courses running in the State. He asked the students to keep trying and learning from their experiences and not be scared of failing and making mistakes. The session was attended by students from various schools, colleges and educational institutes at Bhubaneswar.



Man on Fire: Stephen Kelman and Bibhuti Nayak discuss the dynamics between the biographer and his subject. In conversation with Sandip Roy

Discussion between the author Stephen and his muse, Bibhuti, a sports enthusiast from rural Cuttack, revolves around one of his books, The Man on Fire. It is a concoction of a two-year near courtship between the author and his subject, with a perfect blend of emotions and real time incidences that depict poignantly the hardships that Bibhuti goes through to emerge as a sportsman pushing to break his own records.

Kanishk Tharoor and Paramita Satpathy on the challenges of the short story, the novella, and the novel; in conversation with Malavika R Banerjee
Kanishk Tharoor and Paramita Satpathy discussed about the differences they have felt while penning down a short story vis-à-vis novels. They were of the opinion that writing a short story demands a lot of intensity. While a short story leaves the readers to figure out the end on their own, a novel, on the other hand is like a long journey where the author takes the readers along.

The Great Derangement: Amitav Ghosh takes stock of the dangers that climate change poses to India’s coastline, in conversation with Kanishk Tharoor

In the concluding session, Dr. Subhash Pani, Former Chief Secretary of Odisha, deliberated on climate change effects and the importance of a dialogue amongst the different stakeholders of the society. Speaking on the book and the issue of environment degradation, Amitav Ghosh remarked that we cannot solve the issues of world and environment by riding on morality, but by being rational and trying to find out solutions that are both practical and executional.

Closing session and Vote of Thanks
Mr Chanakya Chaudhary, Group Director, Corporate Communication & Regulatory Affairs, Tata Steel, thanked the audience and the citizens of Bhubaneswar for making the literary meet a grand success. He added that Tata Steel will continue to promote art, literature, and sports in the State of Odisha and shall come back with events such as this to fuel thoughts and pursuits.


Day 1 - FRIDAY, 20 JANUARY, 2017


11:00 am

Inauguration by Nayantara Sahgal

11:30 am

If Test Cricket is Literature, T20 is a Clever Tweet: Nasser Hussain and Boria Majumdar in conversation

12.30 pm

What is a Classic? Sitakant Mahapatra, Ramakanta Rath and Haraprasad Das, in conversation with Devdas Chhotray

1.30 pm


2.30 pm

India@70: Nayantara Sahgal and Kiran Nagarkar talk about chronicling and watching India for seven decades

3.30 pm

Beneath a Rougher Sea: Release of Susmita Bagchi's book followed by discussion with Gargi Bhattacharjee Ali, moderated by Diksha Tiwari

4.30 pm

Has Breaking News Broken the Media’s Image? Ashok Malik and Soumya Ranjan Patnaik in conversation with Sandeep Sahu

5.30 pm

Why Don’t we Speak Odia Once we Leave Odisha? Kalikesh Singh Deo, Bikram Das and Yashodhara Mishra in conversation with Tanaya Patnaik

7.00 pm

King Lear: KIIT presents an Odia interpretation of William Shakespeare’s play on the 400th anniversary of his death. Directed by Anant Mahapatra.
Venue: KIIT Auditorium
Play Partner: KIIT University

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Day 2 - Saturday, 21 JANUARY, 2017