India Guest of Honor country at Paris Book Fair 2021

Virtual events to mark the collaboration

India Guest of Honor country at Paris Book Fair 2021

Paris’ annual book fair, also known as Livre Salon de Paris will be held from 28-31 May 2021. Last year, the book event was canceled due to measures taken by the French government to contain the coronavirus outbreak. (Read our story about the cancellation here). The Livre Salon de Paris, organized by the French Publishers Association every year since 1981, has become a rich and culturally diverse event which enables to discover the main portfolios of the contemporary publishing industry.

This year India will be the Guest of Honour Country at Paris Book Fair, Livre Paris. Institut Francais India (IFI), the French Institute in India, has lined up a number of virtual events in the build-up to the literary extravaganza.

La Fête de l’animation film festival

Institut Français brings cinema to the world, for every audience and every age. The institute is organizing a virtual film festival where 2 films and 11 French and African short movies will be accessible free of charge online from 14 to 31 October as part of the celebrations. The list includes Adama by Simon Rouby; Yellowbird by Christian de Vita; Tales of Africa – 6 short animated films made in different African countries; Shamazulu, Le Chasseur et l’antilope, Malika et la sorcière, Le Cadeau, Les Trois vérités, Le Lutteur – Jeux, imagination et petites bêtises – 5 short films without words for 3-6 years old – L’atelier. No registration is required to view these movies. Click here to watch the films.


In India, the link between English and social privilege has been treated as self-evident. But our complacency about its role as a marker of distinction, and especially about the precise modalities by which it achieves its effects, may be misplaced. Never simple even in the past, the contemporary place and functioning of the English language is more complicated than might seem at first glance. CSH Lecture Series #6 by Dr Satish Deshpande on ‘Language as privilege: English and its others in contemporary India’ will throw light on how English is acquired and the consequences of being acquired in specific ways.

Speaker Satish Deshpande MA (Economics) (JNU), MA, PhD (University of California), is professor of sociology at University of Delhi (Delhi School of Economics, Department of Sociology). His research interests include caste and class inequalities, contemporary social theory, politics and history of the social sciences and south-south interactions. He is the author of Contemporary India: A Sociological View (2003) and (with Ghanshyam Shah, Harsh Mander, Sukhadeo Thorat and Amita Baviskar) Untouchability in Rural India (2006).

The lecture will take place on 2 November at Centre de Sciences Humaines from 1700-1830 hours IST. Join the online zoom lecture here


The French Institute in India and Collège de France have created an itinerant chair in India. Collège de France is a highly reputed French higher education and research establishment. Since the 16th century, it has been a forum for cutting-edge research and education in all fields of knowledge, from mathematical and natural sciences to social sciences and humanities.

The French Institute collaborates with the International Relations Department of Collège de France to invite reputed French scholars from diverse fields (demography, philosophy, history, sociology, biology, physics, and cybersecurity) to conduct seminars in leading Indian institutions of superior learning. The program encourages long term exchanges of knowledge between the two countries.

In the framework of the itinerant chair of Collège de France in India, Professor Gérard Berry will conduct webinars in collaboration with Indian academic institutions in Delhi, Hyderabad, Chennai and Mumbai from 2-10 November 2020. Gérard Berry is a member of the French Académie des sciences and gold medal of CNRS in 2014.

Berry will be conducting a webinar in collaboration with India Habitat Centre on ‘why computing is turning the world upside down’ on 2 November at 1830 hours IST. Register for the event here

He will also be speaking in collaboration with International Institute of Information Technology (IIIT), Hyderabad; Institute of Mathematical Sciences and Chennai Mathematical Institute, Chennai; and IIT Bombay and TIFR in the framework of the School of Technology and Computer Science Colloquium, Mumbai.

Valley of Words Festival 2020

IFI will participate in Valley of Words (VOW) Festival 2020 in the quaint town of Mussoorie on 21st November. The first event will be a conversation on French territories in India between Dr Samuel Berthet, French historian and director of Alliance Française de Hyderabad, and Dr Sanjeev Chopra, IAS, director & chairperson, Lal Bahadur Shastri National IAS Academy, Mussoorie. Other events include a translation workshop with Alain Desoulières, a specialist of Urdu and Hindi; and online conversation between the Ambassador of France to India HE Emmanuel Lenain with HH Brig Sukhjeet Singh and Ms. Cynthia Meera Frederick on the book ‘Prince, Patron and Patriarch: Maharaja Jagatjit Singh of Kapurthala.’

Movie Screening

Gaël Faye’s acclaimed novel Petit Pays (Small Country) will be launched in Hindi on 26th November 2020, French teacher’s day. The novel has been translated by Brigadier Kamal Nayan Pandit and has been published in Hindi by Tara Press. The book’s film adaptation by Eric Barbier will be screened online for all the Indian public, followed by a live discussion with the author. Register for the event here

France is working with Chandigarh administration to protect the city’s heritage and efforts to develop a model of sustainable living. Talented Indian artists, writers and students are welcome in France. Prajwal Parajuly will be soon in residency at the Maison des Ecrivains Etrangers et Traducteurs in Saint- Nazaire. On his way, he will stop at Librairie Le Phénix, a Parisian bookstore specializing in Asian literature, to present his latest novel, Land Where I Flee, translated in French under the title Fuir et revenir. The novel has been shortlisted for the Emile Guimet Museum Asian Novel Prize 2020.

These achievements mark a renewed cooperation between India and France in the literary and publishing landscape.

2023 promises an interesting ride for print in India

Indian Printer and Publisher founded in 1979 is the oldest B2B trade publication in the multi-platform and multi-channel IPPGroup. While the print and packaging industries have been resilient in the past 33 months since the pandemic lockdown of 25 March 2020, the commercial printing and newspaper industries have yet to recover their pre-Covid trajectory.

The fragmented commercial printing industry faces substantial challenges as does the newspaper industry. While digital short-run printing and the signage industry seem to be recovering a bit faster, ultimately their growth will also be moderated by the progress of the overall economy. On the other hand book printing exports are doing well but they too face several supply-chain and logistics challenges.

The price of publication papers including newsprint has been high in the past year while availability is diminished by several mills shutting down their publication paper and newsprint machines in the past four years. Indian paper mills are also exporting many types of paper and have raised prices for Indian printers. To some extent, this has helped in the recovery of the digital printing industry with its on-demand short-run and low-wastage paradigm.

Ultimately digital print and other digital channels will help print grow in a country where we are still far behind in our paper and print consumption and where digital is a leapfrog technology that will only increase the demand for print in the foreseeable future. For instance, there is no alternative to a rise in textbook consumption but this segment will only reach normality in the next financial year beginning on 1 April 2023.

Thus while the new normal is a moving target and many commercial printers look to diversification, we believe that our target audiences may shift and change. Like them, we will also have to adapt with agility to keep up with their business and technical information needs.

Our 2023 media kit is ready, and it is the right time to take stock and reconnect with your potential markets and customers. Print is the glue for the growth of liberal education, new industry, and an emerging economy. We seek your participation in what promises to be an interesting ride.

– Naresh Khanna

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