I WAS quite surprised after reading Nadeem F. Paracha’s inaccurate and exaggerated account of the Karachi International Book Fair (Images, Dec 16).
This particular book fair was one of the healthiest events to happen in Karachi, and the city needs more of such activities. Books of all genre and topics were available under one roof and, yes, religion was also one of those topics and it’s true that one hall was devoted to religious books.
But Mr Paracha completely failed to mention the amazing variety of fiction and nonfiction titles available from writers all over the world in the other two halls.
The crowd that was visiting the book fair comprised not only Arabic-chanting mullahs, but avid readers from all over the city, schoolchildren, parents with their families, and the sheer love of reading could be felt in the atmosphere.
It is pretty obvious that the writer is just exaggerating the presence of religious books to create some controversy and to stir the drawing activists who want to blame the mullahs for all the failures of this country.
I myself am no pro-mullah, but yes a reader I am and the Karachi International Book Fair is one of the best places for a reader to be.
ZAINAB GHANI BALAGAM Karachi