Pondy Lit Fest: Left Leaders Oppose Free Speech, Alliance Française Distances Itself

An alliance of Left parties, the Viduthalai Chiruthaigal Katchi (VCK) and the Dravida Kazhagam (DK) will stage a protest near the Alliance Francaise on August 17, the opening day of the Pondy Lit Fest (PLF) 2018, demanding the cancellation of the festival, as it allegedly provides a forum for the promotion of right-wing ideology.

The lit fest, scheduled to start from 17 August, is expected to be inaugurated by Union Minister Smriti Irani. Among the notable guests are Puducherry Lieutenant Governor Kiran Bedi and Chief Minister Narayanasamy.

The fest will be attended by people from all walks of life: literature, journalism, policy-making and the government alike. Filmmaker Vivek Agnihotri, author Amish Tripathi who is well known for his Shiva trilogy, NITI Aayog chairman Vivek Debroy are some of the big names that will be attending the freethinking sessions of the literature festival.

R. Rajangam, State secretary of the Communist Party of India (Marxist) (CPI-M) dubbed the Pondy Lit Fest as “an event promoted by the RSS.”