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Airspace closure spells disaster for the 10th Karachi Literature Festival

March 2, 2019
Airspace closure spells disaster for the 10th Karachi Literature Festival

The 10th Karachi Literature Festival was coloured by mismanagement on Saturday as most of the speakers weren’t able to make it to Karachi due to the airspace closure. 

“Due to the on-going situation in the country the speakers coming from Lahore and Islamabad couldn’t make it to the event. We have rescheduled and replaced some of the sessions with Sunday’s programme,” Karachi Literature Festival Marketing Director Raheela Baqai told SAMAA Digital.

She said the people who visited KLF on Saturday should check their official Facebook page before coming to take note of the changes.

Related: Pakistani airspace reopens after 48 hours

“With due apologies, the updated schedule for Sunday will be published by the end of Saturday so to avoid any mismanagement,” said Baqai.

She also mentioned that around 10 speakers from Lahore couldn’t make it and only a handful of the speakers from Islamabad attended the event. “There are many speakers coming by train for the event,” said Baqai.

Airspace across the country was shut down on Wednesday after a high alert was issued in the wake of Pakistan shooting down two Indian jets that violated Pakistani airspace. Airspace in Karachi, Peshawar, Quetta and Islamabad was reopened on Friday. Airspace in Lahore still hasn’t been opened.

Related: 10th Karachi Literature Festival kicks off at Beach Luxury Hotel

On Friday evening, the city’s largest annual literature festival kicked off at Beach Luxury Hotel. Governor Imran Ismail inaugurated the festival.

The three-day festival was supposed to feature more than 200 speakers — 15 of whom are international speakers — 80 sessions, and 30 book launches. Some of the prominent speakers are Deborah Baker, IA Rehman, Anwar Maqsood, Ishrat Husain and Iftikhar Arif.

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