Rain and strong winds dealt a blow to publishers on the 26th day of Amar Ekushey Book Fair on Monday as many of them saw their books get soaked during early morning and evening storms on the fair premises.
Stall attendants expecting a fair-end rush of visitors struggled to deal with the unexpected showers.
At least 10 bookstalls were partially affected by the morning storm while heavy evening showers forced booksellers to shutter their stalls about half an hour before scheduled close.
Fire Service and Civil Defence team leader at the book fair control room Md Rafiqul Islam said that the civil defence personnel launched a patrol across the fair premises just after the stormy winds blew there at 4:15am.
He said that the winds blew away curtains protecting the stalls and drenched many books.
Bookstalls of Prothoma Prokashani, Somoy Prokashani, Sangbed, Granthakutir, Afsar Brothers, Sandesh, Aaro Prokashoni, Journeyman Books, Bangalee and Panjeree Publications were among the affected ones, said publishers and stall attendants.
Bangalee publisher Arif Nazrul said that he had incurred losses of about Tk 35,000 for the early morning rain that soaked over 100 books.
Prothoma stall manager Mohammad Yunus said that the books soaked by rainwater were expensive volumes.
Stall attendants, however, said that thousands of book enthusiasts poured into the fair premises as the shiny day rolled on.
Most of the visitors purchased their preferred titles chosen earlier from catalogues of publishing houses.
Some visitors coming from the outskirts of the capital said that they were paying visits to the fair on the working day as they had failed to make it on the last weekends of the month-long fair.
Heavy rain in the evening disrupted the fair and caused suffering to fair-goers.
On Monday, book fair’s copyright taskforce, led by Tapan Bagchi, issued show-cause notices to 10 publishing houses for violating rules of the fair. They were Chalantika Boighar, Aligarh Library, Rabeya Book House, Supta Publications, Doyel, CCD, Chirantan Prakash, Ghas Phoring and Holy Publications.
Tapan told New Age that the accused publishing houses were found selling books of other publications without taking permission and displaying Indian comics defying the fair’s rules.
The houses were given two days to respond, he said.
On the day, 117 new titles hit the bookstalls with 53 collections of poems leading the tally.
Bangla Academy held a discussion commemorating Bijoy Sarkar. Shahida Khatun presented the keynote paper while professor Abul Ahsan Chowdhury chaired the discussion.
Today at Mela Mancha, the academy will hold a discussion on challenges of quality development in the country’s publishing sector.
Want stories like this in your inbox?
Sign up to exclusive daily email
More Stories from Country