With the modernity of globalisation, the phrases such as e-books replacing hardcover books, online stores replacing bookshops float around all the time. Bangladesh, however has managed to keep the love for book stores alive. Places like Pathak shamabesh, batighor are always appreciated and visited by the vast majority of book lovers in Bangladesh, yet there has always been a void in terms of having a library where the readers can sit and enjoy a read from any random book they pick up.
Bengal Foundation is an organisation that aims to uphold the cultural aspects of Bangladesh and make it globally renowned. They have had previous establishments like Bengal gallery, ensuring that the Bangladeshis are constantly exposed to their local culture.
Their latest venture, Bengal Boi, wins the hearts of many. The bookstore has the ultimate objective to enlighten their readers by introducing them to the culture and history of Bangladesh through art. They create an ambience that attracts the reader over and over again and also exclusively cater to the children of Bangladesh through their kids’ section.
The library plus bookstore plus café was inaugurated on the 14th of November 2017 at 4:30 pm, followed by a five day long festival. During the festival, a new book by Bengal Publications ‘Stories from the Edge: Personal Narratives of the Liberation War’ was unveiled. The five day long opening ceremony included all the cultural aspects of Bangladesh, including poetry recital, discussion on art and culture, book unveiling, film exhibitions along with song performances.
Veteran educationist Professor Emeritus Dr Anisuzzaman of Dhaka University, Prime Minister's International Affairs Adviser Dr Gowher Rizvi jointly inaugurated the store. “I wanted to create an interactive place where people from all ages can enjoy literature and art, Bengal Boi is the result of that endeavour.’’ said the chairman of Bengal Group, Abul Khair Litu.
Appreciating the initiative, Dr. Gowher Rizvi also said, “There is a restaurant in every corner of the city but you don’t see a bookstore. People of Dhaka need more Bengal Boi.” Bengal boi, with their heartwarming initiative is nurturing the young population of Dhaka and creating more intellectually aware readers.