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Agartala, March 2 (IANS) The National Book Trust (NBT) has taken an ambitious plan to boost tribal literature in northeast India, trust chairman Baldeo Bhai Sharma said here on Wednesday.
"As a first step of our programme to boost tribal literature in northeast, the NBT is organising a four-day workshop on tribal literature in Agartala," Sharma told reporters.
"The workshop has started on Tuesday in presence of many important tribal and non-tribal writers, poets, researchers, academicians, illustrations experts and artists," the chairman said.
He said: "If we find encouraging response from the litterateurs of both tribals and non-tribals and support from the state governments in the northeast India such workshop woulds be held in each northeastern state."
According to Sharma, the NBT, an autonomous body under the human resource development ministry, has so far published over 24,000 titles in 32 languages.
He said that the NBT also operates an innovative scheme of exhibition of books through mobile vans across the country.
To make books accessible to all people in remote, rural, tribal and difficult areas since its launch In 1992, the "books on the wheels" drew huge public attention and attractions in all parts of the country.
A book carrying exhibition bus is now on tour to the northeastern states.
The NBT has set up a National Centre for Children's Literature (NCCL) in 1993 to monitor, coordinate, plan and aid the publication of children's literature in various Indian languages.
"The NCCL is mandated to conduct surveys and research work related to children's literature," the NBT chief said.
India's northeast region, comprising eight states, is one of the most colourful and culturally rich communities of India.
The region is considered as one of most culturally diverse regions of the world, with the habitation of more than 200 fascinating tribes and many have rich literature.
Tribals make up 27 to 28 percent of the northeast region's total population of around 45.58 million. (IANS)