Founded on 28 November 2003
Indo-European Hindi Festival, London, 13-15 October 2023
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The Frederick Pincott UK Award of the High Commission of India-London and Arts Council of England’s Achievement Award winner Vatayan was founded 28 November (William Blake’s Birthday) 2003 and on the very same day, its first programme was held in the foyer of the Royal Festival Hall at the South Bank, London, in the presence of the UK based poets, scholars, artists and media personnel. Since Lockdown, our programmes have increased tenfold, so far we have organised 149 weekly programmes, in which authors and audience participate from all over the world.
Aims & Objectives: promote Indo-British dialogue by bringing the international writers and artists together, organise social, art, cultural and educational activities; promote an atmosphere of peace and harmony. Vatayan has collaborated with the prestigious literary organisations in holding international festivals: Ghalib, Deccani, Maulana Azad, Sufi Voices, Inner Life of Translations etc, besides book launches, seminars, interviews, poetry and story recitals, poetry picnics.
An annual Vatayan Poetry Award was also instituted in 2004 where an Indian author is invited for a week to interact with the UK-based thinkers and scholars. The Indian Council for Cultural Relations sponsored airfares for the Vatayan award winners (2003-2010). Vatayan award winners include Manoj Muntashir, Javed Akhtar, Nida Fazli, Prasoon Joshi, Rajesh Reddy, Kunwar Bechen, Prof. Pushpita Awasthi, Laxmishankar Bajpai, Geet Chaturvedi, Dr K K Goyanka, Manisha Kulshreshth, Alka Sinha, amongst a dozen more.
Publications & Album: Sponsored by the Arts Council for England, Vatayan has published three anthologies of the UK based poets and one in Marathi, released an album of songs of the UK based Indian poets (composed and sung by Radhika Chopra). In 2015, we received sponsorship from the Arts for All for publishing two anthologies of stories and poems: Desi Girls: Stories by Indian Women Writers Abroad, and Native Scents: Poems by the Indian Poets of Hindi, Punjabi and Urdu.
Poetry Picnics: We have held poetry picnics at Shakespeare’s House in Stratford Upon Avon, Roman Verulamium at St Albans and Keats House-Hampstead. Vatayan has hosted several eminent international poets including Andrew Motion, Sukrita Pal Kumar, Ruth Padel, India Russell, Mevlut Ceylan, Yogesh Patel, MBE, Ashok Bajpayi, Neeraj,Balswarup Rahi, besides poets of the regional languages.
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