THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Curtains fell on the five-day cultural extravaganza at Manaveeyam Veedhi. The ‘street book festival’ which concluded on Sunday provided a rich experience to people from all walks of life. The stretch between the offices of Keltron and Kerala Water Authority had been buzzing with activities from morning till night.
For the artistically inclined, a host of competitions in music, folk songs, drawing, recitation etc had been organised. Evenings were dedicated to thought provoking discussions. The last five days saw spirited discussions on street art, culture, traditional media, environment, health, new media etc.
The programme saw big names such Prabha Varma, N S Madhavan, Sugathakumari, V Madhusoodhanan Nair, D Reghoothaman, Kureepuzha Sreekumar etc speaking on varied topic. Magic shows, instrument music, plays, mime shows ensured that the visiting family stayed back well after 9 pm.
A few women picked up tips on cycling with the help of Indus Cycling Embassy which organised training sessions from Wednesday to Friday. On Saturday the venue offered training in book binding. A live demonstration of mural paintings was also a huge draw. Pup adoption campaign and transgender fest on Saturday came as a novelty to many.
The cultural corridor in the city became a major centre for book lovers. 10 book stalls from different publishers vied for attention of the booklovers. One of the stalls showcased waste management and smart city initiatives of the civic body. Top publishers including Kerala Sahitya Academi, DC, Chintha, Sastra Sahitya Parishad, Prabhat and government agencies such as State Institute of Children’s Literature and State Institute of Languages had put up their stalls. According to them there was good demand for novels and children’s story books.
Mayor V K Prasanth said the fest has cemented the place of Manaveeyam as the cultural hub in the city. The weekends were dedicated to two literary legends from the city. While Saturday evening was set aside to celebrate the life and works of D Vinayachandran, the last day of the fest was dedicated to O N V Kurup.
A poem recitation contest was held on Sunday for school and college students. George Onakkoor, Kureepuzha Sreekumar and Vinod Vysakhi talked about the life and works of the late poet. Finance Minister T M Thomas Isaac inaugurated the concluding session of the festival and Minister for Tourism, Co-operation and Devaswom, Kadakampally Surendran presided over it. Manaveeyam Theruvorakoottam, which has been collecting stories, drawings, cartoons, poetry etc from the public brought it out as book. The book was released during the function. The book comprises 60 works contributed by the general public. The curtains fell on the event with a music show.