Experiences at an International Book Festival in Ernakulam District

Ms. Aditi Sukhthankar, Kerala

The International Book Festival was organised in November-December 2019 in Ernakulam District of Kerala. During the Festival, various organisations of different religious communities had set up stalls to sell books and other products on religious as well as other subjects. Here are some experiences from our participation.

A. The International Book Festival had a distribution stall of another religious organisation. The religious books of another religion were being distributed free-of-cost to every person coming for the Festival. These texts were available in various languages.

B. When one of our lady-seekers enquired with them about this, one of them replied that they were distributing from their own money as their religious duty.

C. Some people, including Hindus, who came to the International Book Festival were accepting the free religious texts without saying or noticing anything. Some people did not understand what exactly was it. This showed the indifference of Hindus towards their Dharma.

D. There were very few people who said ‘we don’t need this’. From this, I thought, how desperately Hindus need education on Dharma and to give a counter reply to save Dharma.

E. Some Hindus were opposing members of other religions and refused the texts being offered free by them.

F. A Hindu lady said to them, “We have many Scriptures in Hindu Dharma. It will take a long time to read and under-stand them. We do not need your book”. Another devotee asked, “If we give you Shrimadbhagawadgeeta, will you keep it here ?”

G. One day, a couple and their 5-year-old daughter of that religion was distributing their texts on their stall. This showed that parents encourage children to spread their religion from an early age.

– Ms. Aditi Sukhthankar, Kerala