KARACHI: The 8th Karachi International Book Fair (KIBF) opened to small crowds at the Expo Centre on Thursday.

A huge variety of books on offer including religious, technical, fiction, general interest, textbooks and children’s books in the Urdu, Sindhi and English languages couldn’t draw the expected crowds on the opening day of the fair.

” Syeda Tehseen Fatima of Urdu Virsa told Dawn on being asked about the sales at her stall.

Still the ones holding some attraction for the buyers were the religious books. Afshan Nadeem, a fashion design student at Indus University, said that she was happy to have come across two religious books that she liked and bought immediately. “One is titled Tohfa-i-Khawateen and the other is a collection of significant incidents from the lives of different prophets,” she happily shared information about her purchases.

A first-year student of engineering at Bahria College, Faraz Ahmed, meanwhile, was visiting each and every stall comparing prices. “I only have one book on my list, my course textbook Tehseen-i-Urdu, which I already saw at a stall back there,” he gestured behind him. “My teacher had said that I would be able to get the book here easily and at a reasonable price. Now I’m just going around looking for it at other stalls to get a good bargain,” he said. The other good sellers besides religious books and textbooks were the children’s books and stationery.

“I’m looking for fiction for my little sister, Sana,” said the lucky little girl’s big sister, Madiha Ashraf. “Though there is little discount on children’s books, I’m sure I’ll find some nice bargains as I go about my search,” she added.

While some of the stalls bearing various known names such as Say Publishing, Fahim’s, etc., were still vacant on day one, the largest crowds were witnessed at the Liberty Books stall in Hall 3 as their discounts, with 15 per cent off on all new arrivals, proved quite attractive for the buyers. There was also a corner reserved for cheaper books in categories of under Rs200, Rs400, and so on. And the sitting area in the stall was also rather inviting.

Earlier, the book fair, which continues till Dec 10, was inaugurated by Sindh Senior Minister for Education and Literacy Pir Mazhar-ul-Haq and Minister for Overseas Pakistanis Dr Farooq Sattar.

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