The organizers of the Jaipur Literature Festival (JLF) will hold the first edition of JLF Belfast, which will bring the celebration of books, creativity, and music to Northern Ireland capital Belfast from June 21-23.

JLF, an annual literary festival that takes place in India’s ‘pink city’ Jaipur, also has a global footprint in countries including the US, Canada, and the UK.

Supported by British Council Northern Ireland and the Arts Council, it will now take place on Irish lands for the first time.

The cultural carnival will explore themes that bind India and Northern Ireland and have deeply affected both nations such as borders and partition, and the concepts of identity and migration, among others, the organizer Teamwork Arts said in a statement.

The diversity of contemporary writers at JLF Belfast will reflect inclusive literary traditions of India and Ireland, it added.

“Folks from Northern Ireland kept coming to the (Jaipur) festival every year, wanted a similar festival there. Two years I sat them down and asked why… They said they wanted the diversity, content and varied fare we have. I went there to check the space and realized that Ireland is so different, and because of its troublesome history, needs healing through dialogue,” Teamwork Arts Managing Director Sanjoy Roy told IANS here.

Among those featuring in the weekend programme are: Lucy Caldwell, multi-award-winning author of three novels; Laxmi Narayan Tripathi, iconic Indian transgender rights activist; Eric Ngalle Charles, Cameroon-born writer, poet and playwright; Pico Iyer, acclaimed travel writer and author of more than a dozen books; esteemed writers Brian Keenan and Patrick Gale; writer and diplomat Navdeep Suri and award-winning poet Ruth Padel.

The three-day festival will feature around 20 sessions as it highlights South Asia’s unique multilingual literary heritage.

The inaugural edition of JLF Belfast was formally announced on Tuesday at the British Council here.