Srinagar to get 200 libraries in schools and panchayats over the next two months
Jammu & Kashmir’s summer capital, Srinagar, would get 200 libraries in schools and panchayats over the next two months. As many as 21 of them have been established in hostels of the city’s colleges.
Deputy Commissioner, Srinagar, Shahid Choudhary said that reading culture has always been essential to life in Srinagar which has of late suffered. “The book reading culture is diminishing here. When books and libraries would be readily available, people will obviously access them.”
He said they have set up 21 libraries in various hostels of professional and degree colleges and are setting up one in each panchayat and some wards of Srinagar. “In colleges, there is limited scope for libraries but if they are in hostels, the students will read at leisure.”
In each library, there will be roughly 2000-plus books besides two computers with internet facilities.
The list of these books was compiled by students after which they were acquired by the administration. “There is an involvement of students at each level. The libraries are planned and managed by them and we will be augmenting their resources annually,” he said. “We thought that a positive engagement of students and youth is necessary and what better way than this.”
Choudhary said around 150 libraries will be established in schools of peripheral areas in the coming months. “In Panchayats, the books will be varied... These libraries will be managed by the panchayat people.”
“Brilliant idea… should have books on all subjects. People can donate books as well and there should be a browsing centre in all. Photocopying facility as in National libraries,” tweeted Parvaiz Kaul, a prominent doctor.
“Very welcome step sir. This must not be limited to Srinagar city only but we must have at least one public library in every Panchayat in rural areas as well. And people should be motivated to donate books to these libraries,” said Bilal Khanday, a netizen.
Satish Dua, a retired army officer, suggested using the reach of the army for such an initiative. “When I was Corps Commander, we had established 66 Chinar Nau-Jawan Clubs, with great response. Among other facilities they have a library too, some big some small. You may consider partnering with them and use their reach in remote areas. Your choice of books will be more relevant,” he wrote in response to Choudhary’s tweet about the initiative.