The Samrala municipal council library that was established 40 years ago has no books in it. One can only find Punjabi, Hindi and Urdu newspapers in the library.
On visiting the library, it was found that the library has been set up in a single room with eight chairs and a table. Interestingly, there is an over head reservoir installed in the same premises and children are using the premises as a playground. To add to the apathy, there is no librarian and the clerical staff looks after the library, which remains open from 9am to 5pm.
Locals claim that no efforts have been made by the authorities to attract book lovers. With no books in the library, only retired people visit the library to read newspapers.
Local resident Tirath Raj said, “I go to the library for reading newspapers but from last 15 days, few newspapers are not coming in the library. What is the use of reading old papers as we need the latest information about what is happening around us?”
He added, “The authorities must provide newspapers on daily basis as there are many residents who are fond of reading newspapers.”
When asked that whether the library has any books, he replied that I have never seen books in the library.
“Moreover, No one here knows Urdu, so there is no use of keeping Urdu newspapers in the library,” he added.
However, executive officer of Samrala municipal council Balwinder Singh said, “As of now, there are no books in the library as nobody has approached us to keep books. As per demand of residents, newspapers in Punjabi, Hindi and Urdu language are available in the library.”
When asked that whether residents have ever complained about the library, he replied no we have not received a single compliant.
“If residents will demand than we can arrange books for the library, but we can start this only if the public will cooperate with us,” he added.