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Shashi Tharoor on his latest book 'Why I am a Hindu'

This year marks the 10th edition of the Emirates Airline Festival of Literature; Dr Zaki Nusseibah awarded Personality of the Year

  • Shashi Tharoor speaks about his latest book ‘Inglorious Empire’ in DubaiImage Credit: Arshad Ali/Gulf News
  • Shashi Tharoor at the Emirates Literature Festival DubaiImage Credit: Arshad Ali/Gulf News
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Shashi Tharoor on his latest book 'Why I am a Hindu'

Indian politician and author Shashi Tharoor is at the Emirates Airline Festival of Literature with his latest book, Why I am a Hindu.

Tharoor a former United Nations diplomat is currently serving as Member of Parliament, in the Lok Sabha, the lower house of the Indian Parliament.

His book comes at a time when many feel that the notion of secularism is being challenged in India. Gulf News spoke to him to find out what prompted Tharoor to write the book.

Personality of the Year

The cultural advisor of Shaikh Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahyan, Dr Zaki Nussaibeh, Minister of State, was awarded Personality of the Year at the opening ceremony of the Emirates Airlines Festival of Literature in Dubai today.

Speaking at the ceremony, Dr Nusseibah stressed on the role literature plays in promoting tolerance.

A love story for lonely prime numbers

World Champion Slam Poet Harry Baker performs ‘59’, a love story for lonely prime numbers, for Gulf News readers.

Baker won the World Championships in 2012, becoming the youngest ever winner, and his background in mathematics helps him find a unique parallel between the patterns in words and numbers.

“I pray to God to enhance the cultural ties with different people of the world to build a world that believes in literature and to build a peaceful world,” he said.

Why is poetry important?

Afra Atiq, a spoken word artist speaks to Gulf News, at the Emirates Literature Festival.

Shaikh Nahyan Bin Mubarak Al Nahyan, Minister of Tolerance, also spoke at the event, stating that EAFOL has now become a tradition.

“Each book enables a new and more nuanced understanding of ourselves and other people,” he said.

Opening ceremony of the Emirates Airlines Festival of Literature.

The Festival will have over 200 sessions, with 180 authors coming from 47 countries.

At a press conference last month, Isobel Abulhoul, director of EAFOL, said that a book, ‘For the Love of Words’ would be published to commemorate the 10th edition of the festival.

Children regale the audience at the opening ceremony of the Emirates Airline Festival of Literature.

Over a period of 10 days, the festival will offer a chance to visitors to hear various authors speak about their work and personal journeys, attend panel discussions, writing workshops and participate in competitions.

There will also be special children’s programmes for young readers.

What William Dalrymple thinks about India 

New Delhi is now home for Scottish historian and author William Dalrymple.

His upcoming book is on how a corporation like the East India Company was able to take over the Mughal Empire. I

n an interview with Gulf News, he speaks about how “India remains, despite everything, a very tolerant country”.

Tickets for sessions can be bought online at emirateslitfest.com as well as from the venues. Most of the events will take place at the Intercontinental, Dubai Festival City.

The festival ends on March 10.

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