LitoFest Mumbai

India's Premier, Literature, Art & Music Festival

2 day literature carnival Lit-O-Fest bids goodbye with a promise to return

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Eclectic mix of personalities such as Gulzar Saab, Hariharan, Dr. Jaspinder Narula, General V.K Singh, Dr. Radhakrishnan Pillai and many others soak in the infectious vibe

Indian authors and book lovers found a new haven at Lit o Fest, Mumbai’s literature carnival that left an indelible imprint in its very first edition. Eager festival goers showed up for the second and last day at the quintessential JJ School of Arts’ lawn. Soon the two halls too were filled with enthusiasm. From book launches by authors such as Faraaz Kazi, Javed Siddiqui and Gulzar Saab to providing a window to budding and minority authors at the Author Publisher meet, from thought-provoking sessions to interactive workshops, from a powerful mythological Hindi play ‘PAANSA’ to an inimitable folk and fusion performance, Lit o Fest offered every literature and culture lover something memorable to take back. PAANSA stood out with its dramatization and translation by Gulzar as PAANSA, but the man with a magic wand of words had more to offer through his conversation on ‘Translations’, . Javed Siddiqui’s book “Roshandaan” Anant Vijay ‘s “Bollywood selfie” K Hari’s “that frequent visitor “ Faraaz kazi’s “Love .... was launched at the Lit-O-Fest Mumbai in the presence of Gulzar Saab, Rakshanda Jalil, Salim Arif, Festival Director Smita Parikh and Saurabh Daftary, Founder of E Bizz Entertainment Pvt Ltd, The two day festival kicked off with an Inaugural ceremony by Col. Lalit Rai (Vir Chakra ) the Real hero along with Ashutosh of AAP.

Day - 1 Sessions

  • Mukhaute Ka Rajdharm – Ashutosh in conversation with Quaisar Khalid about Ashutosh’s Book.
  • The Writing On The Walls –Indian Literature the signs of Coming change from walls to waves- panelists – Dr. Radhakrishnan Pillai, Anand Neelkanthan, Bhawna Somaiya, Faraaz kazi, Moderator- Meghna Pant
  • Parsi Goint Extinct - Rich in culture & literature, Parsi community needs to populate.- panelists- Cyrus Broacha, Perizad Zorabian, Kunal Vijayakar, Mehrab Irani and Moderator -Nisha Jhamval.
  • Sahitya Aur Cinema- The new age cinema, how close to literature- Anup Jalota, Swanand Kirkire, Quaisar Khalid and Moderator- Pankaj Dubey
  • Music Speaks -The journey of Indian Bollywood music- Salim Suleiman, Swanand Kirkire and Dr. Ashok Chakradhar
  • Hindi Bhi Hai Trendy= Hindi is no more limited to just text books. It's everywhere around us – Ajay Brahmatmaj, Amit Bahl, Smita Parikh, Dr. Chaitanya Prakash and Pankaj Dubey
  • Cook book-Food writing- the scope of creativity -Kunal Vijaykar, Chef Ajay Chopra, Cyrus Broacha and Nisha Jamval
  • Wild and Wooly- Let's write about the birds & the beasts of India (A workshop for young Adults) - workshop by Deepak Dalal
  • Kargil , Leading from the Front - Indian Army, the LIVE experience, told- untold stories – Col. Lalit Rai
  • Aao Hindi Sapnein Dekhein- Can our mother tongue help us progress in the changing world?- Arun Maheshwari , Savita Singh, Dr. Ashok Chakradhar, Kavita Gupta and Rajni Kulshreshtra
  • The Master Class- The three "R"s' of Kiran Nagarkar: Reading, Writing & bad 'Arithmetic' By Kiran Nagarkar.
  • History Meets Mystery - Mythological books - based on theories or grandma stories- Anand Neelkanthan, Shobha Nihalani, Shatrujeet Nath, Satyarth Nayak, Suhail Mathur and Anjali Kripalani.
  • She Writes She- Women writing is influenced by their life experiences – Meghna Pant, Manjari Parabhu, Nisha Jamval and Pankaj Dubey.
  • Dalit Literature- Prof. Avinash Dolas
  • Hansi Gulzar Hai- Humor writing in Hindi and different aspects- Shailesh Lodha and Smita Parikh


Total 56 Entries had come for categories – best manuscripts – Fiction/ Non Fiction/ Poetry / Best designed book Best self published book and best first published books

Total 8 books were selected by our jury- Mr. Saurabh Daftary, Ajay Brahmatmaj, Sunderchand Thakur, Akash Shah, Mehrab Irani and Anjali Kripalani, these books are taken by Vani Prakashan, Harper Collin, Jaico, become Shakespeare for free publishing.

This is the first of its type initiative, Lit-o-Fest is a festival with a difference, with a philanthropic angel, we are going to be increasing the numbers .

Day - 2 Sessions

  • 1. Kavita Paath Sahitya Ki Khoobsoorat Dhaara – Sunderchand Thakur, Gagan Gill, Devmani Pandey, Smita Parikh and Dr. Ashok Chakradhar
  • 2. Workshop- Indian Stories-- The Structure and Substance-How Indian writing can go international
  • By Mr Ajay Pandey
  • 3. Progressive Writers Movement- Urdu panel discussion, Javed Siddiqui, Rakshandha Jalil, Salim Arif and Summana Ahmad
  • 4. Be the Bestseller- Insights from Author of best sellers - Corporate Chanakya & Chanakya's 7 secrets of leadership- By Dr. Radhakrishnan Pillai
  • 5. Media Mandi Ke Badalte Niyam -The advent spread and impact of social media- Ajay Brahmatmaj. Anant Vijay, Dr. Chaitanya Prakash and Pankaj Dubey
  • 6. Not a Bad Idea - Murder, Rape, Infidelity - the bad attracts the mass- Brijesh Singh, Faraaz Kazi, Mahendra Jhakar, Fahad Samar and Rasleen Sayal.
  • 7. Spiced-Up -The truth about autobiographies- Gautam Chintamani, Bhawna Somaiya, Gen. V.K Singh, Sathya Saran and Shantanu Ray Chaudhary
  • 8. Roshandaan Par Charcha - Discussion on Javed Siddiqui's book- Roshandaan- With Rakshandha Jalil, Salim Arif and Gulzar Saab.
  • 9. Musitech - The technicalities of music composition- Hariharan in conversation with Dr. Jaspinder Nirula
  • 10. Translations – Gulzar Saab in conversation with Salim Arif
  • 11. PAANSA – The Hindi Play - Pavan K. Varma's Yudhishthar and Draupadi, dramatized & translated by Gulzar Saab as PAANSA
  • 12. Musical performance and Finale – Hariharan, Dr. Jaspinder Narula, Pt. Ajay Pohankar, Abhijit Pohankar and Shankar Brothers

Some insight about eminent panels

Simultaneously, literature lovers immersed in the colorful extravaganza and met some of their favorite authors. In ‘Not a 'Bad' Idea!’, a panel of eminent members discussed how subjects like Murder, Rape, Infidelity have a mass appeal. Hindi remained in vogue on Day 2 with sessions such as ‘Kavita Paath Sahitya Ki Khoobsoorat Dhara’ that showed talented Kavis and their deep rooted passion for Kavita as a medium resurface in the interactive discussion. The session that presented the beauty of Urdu as the language of poetry and verses struck a chord with die-hard literature fanatics. The session ‘Media Mandi Ke Badalte Niyam’ showcased advent, spread and impact of social media. ‘LoveApp!’ particularly appealed youth with its relevant nuances on ‘dating’ turning ‘digital’ for the keypad generation. The session ‘Progressive Writers Movement’ was marked with iconic and insightful takeaways, followed by ‘Spiced Up!’, a discussion on truth about autobiographies.

The evening unfolded a reverberating Folk and Fusion performance by legends including Hariharan, Pandit Ajay Pohankar, Dr. Jaspinder Narula, Abhijit Pohankar, Gio Conda (Italian Opera Singer), Shankar Brothers and John Ellie. Musical instruments complementing India’s best voices left the audience mesmerized. Dr. Jaspinder Narula was in conversation with Hariharan sharing his insights on +the technicalities of music composition. In the workshop ‘Be The Bestseller’, Dr. Radhakrishnan Pillai of Corporate Chanakya & Chanakya's 7 Secrets of Leadership’s fame, shared the experience of being a best-seller author and presented some unmistakable insights.

Smita Parikh, spokesperson for Lit O Fest, expressed, “The two days proved to be a perfect medley of experiences and new ideas. We loved the response and promise to make Lit-O-Fest Mumbai 2015, the festival with a difference bigger, better and even more sought after next year. Thank you Mumbai, JJ School of Arts and Architecture, all the eminent speakers, authors, performers, publishers and above all the enthusiastic literature lovers for setting Lit-o-Fest off to a memorable head-start.”

Day 2 saw the country’s finest speakers, panelists, authors and performers making Lit of Fest in its debut edition a grand success. It took place on 28th February and March 01st 2015 at the JJ School of Arts, Mumbai.