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Posted on Feb 11, 03:29PM | IANS
New Delhi, Feb 10 : The World Book Fair 2013 ended here Sunday on an optimistic note that publishing industry's fortunes in India were on a roll despite the global economic uncertainty.
Pragati Maidan, the sprawling venue of the fair that turned into an annual event this year from its biannual status of last 41 years, was a throng of visitors whose numbers kept surging since morning.
Nearly 1,100 exhibitors from 28 countries showed books in every category in 2,100 stands.
The fair's theme was indigenous and folk literature that reached out to people through an ethnic books corner and and an art exhibition.
The National Book Trust (NBT), which hosts the event with India Trade Promotion Organisation, brought the Sangeet Natak Akademi on board to host a tribal and folk performance festival.
France was the guest country with a pavilion of 200 titles, launches, symposiums and business sessions.
A NBT official Saturday said the number of footfall had crossed 75,000.
Citing early estimates, the official said, nearly 200,000 people visited the fair this year, in a rise from 150,000 last year despite the rain playing spoilsport on the first two days.
This year, the fair went out of its way to push business opportunities -- its primary focus -- with two important B2B events, a New Delhi Rights Table and CEOSpeak where Indian and foreign publishers discussed trade and exchanged ideas.
"We made the fair an annual event this year so that it matches international standards. There were two big B2B events -- a New Delhi rights table where 50 Indian publishers met 11 foreign publishers. Several Indian language rights (of books) were sold in the domestic market and a few in the foreign markets. Indian books will now be translated in foreign languages under a new policy," NBT director M.A. Sikander said.
"Despite the modest budget, the trust tried to give the fair the interactive feel of a literary meet with five authors' corner where at 150 writers met readers and signed books," he told reporters.