More than century-old Rajindra municipal public library situated in the heart of royal city is presently lying in a shambles.
Thanks to the apathy of the Patiala municipal corporation, the library faces shortage of staff, poor maintenance of books, deplorable condition of furniture and almirah.
As per available information, the library has around 70, 000 old books in different languages including Urdu, Punjabi, English. Most of the books are being eaten up by moths and termites.
With the leakage of water from the roof, the books have been completely destroyed and are not in a readable condition. Even religious books were not being maintained by the civic body.
The two-storey building had a children section which was shut down in the past years as there is no manpower and furniture to keep the books and other material for the students.
"Once having the registration of 8,000 members, not even a single person had approached the library now for its registration due to its poor condition. Moreover, the strength of regular readers keep on decreasing", a source said.
Meanwhile, against stipulated strength of 12 staff members, the library is being run by only two employees, including two restorers.
The peripheral area of the library too depicted poor picture as one can see stagnated water, wild grass and garbage littered all over.
Despite repeated presentations to officials, the authorities have completely turned a blind eye. When contacted, mayor Amarinder Bajaj said hardly any person visit the library these days. Therefore, four or five persons are enough to run the library.
"Taking note of daily visitors, we keep on providing funds and other resources to run the library from time to time", he said.