Starting from the first day of February, the month-long Amar Ekushey Book Fair is nearing its peak in the third week. Every day, people of all ages and of different tastes flock to the fair to pick up books. About the book selling scenario of the fair, the correspondent spoke to Hasan Zayedi, Publisher of Pearl Publications.
What's the scene like at this year's fair?
Hasan Zayedi: Despite a large crowd, the average sales are not up to our expectation. However, as the fair nears an end people are buying more books. So I hope we will see a significant growth in sales.
Is there any improvement over previous fairs?
Hasan Zayedi: The venue is larger and security has received a boost. In the past, a a large number of people would gather at Bangla Academy premises, but now the same or larger number are coming every day; however they are being scattered throughout the big fair ground. I think it could have been better organised.
What could have been done to improve the fair?
Hasan Zayedi: The layout of the fair is not very good. Stall distribution is bad; as a result visitors cannot see all the stalls from a corner. Security has been tightened up, which is good, but too many police personnel are inside the fair premises. Lights are out on the street, and I think instead of providing security inside they should focus on security for writers and publishers outside the fair grounds.
Which books record the best sales?
Hasan Zayedi: We have books of Muhammad Zafar Iqbal, Anisul Haq, Sumonto Aslam, Mostafa Mamun and some others writers. These writers' books actually sell most at the fair, as they have a large readership. Young people usually buy books the most.