Phagwara library running from MC building’s lobby
After having shifted the Guru Nanak Dev Municipal Library at least four times in the past five years from one place to another in the city, the Phagwara municipal corporation is now running the library from its lobby after it decided to provide the space where it was earlier housed to the offices of newly elected mayor, senior deputy mayor and deputy mayor.
The civic bodies have been running the library for more than three decades. Readers do not want to visit it anymore due to lack of space and noisy atmosphere. Earlier, around 100-150 people, including women and students, used to visit the library to read books, but now only the elderly come to the library in the morning to read newspapers.
The library has more than 5,000 books and houses rare books written by writers like Bhai Kanha Singh, Amrita Pritam and Nanak Singh. For more than a decade, the library has not received even a single new book due to the government’s apathy.
After shifting it to the lobby, the library does not have proper space for almirahs which are kept in a balcony and books are lying unused as nobody goes there. Earlier, the library had around 100 registered members but the number has come down virtually zero.
“Visitors who come to meet the mayor and his deputies disturb readers who need peaceful environment to study,” Krishan Lal, a reader, said. The library is also facing staff shortage as only an assistant librarian is looking after it. The posts of librarian, restorer and peon are lying vacant for several years.
“The authorities should provide proper space for the library so that I am able to maintain the library,” Hari Dev said.