Manikganj Library lacks readers
MANIKGANJ, Feb 14: Though there are over 40,000 books at Manikganj Public Library, there are hardly any readers.
Due to location of the library in the town's periphery and lack of publicity, the library has a handful of readers. But, the authority is trying to increase readership.
Sources said the library was established on 33-decimal land in Bewtha area of Manikganj Municipality. In 2012, it was shifted to its own building from the rented house of the town's Shahid Faruk Road.
Sources also said there are over 200 seats in the library. Out of eight officials, there are only four: one assistant librarian, one cataloguer, one office assistant and one night guard.
A recent visit to the library found a very thin presence of readers. Some job-seeking youths are its regular readers. Being located in a distant place, travelling to the library takes Tk 20 to 50. As the library is a bit distant from the main road, and as there is no signboard on the entrance, it is not known to many.
A reader Alamgir Hossen said every day, 10 to 15 job-seekers come to the library. Apart from them, there are no other readers.
Another reader Rakib Hossen said a student has to spend at least Tk 30 to 40 for travelling to the library as it is located to a little far from the main town.
The poor presence of readers is mainly due to expensive communication, he pointed out.
Another reader Ity Biswas said, the library makes no publicity, and has no signboard on the entrance. Besides, many necessary books are also not available.
Assistant Teacher of Khan Bahadur Awlad Hossen Khan High School AKM Siddikur Rahman said due to massive accessibility of internet and technology, the current generation is largely away from library-based study. For increasing readership, publicity should be conducted at educational institutions.
Assistant Librarian Masuma Naznin said, "We've manpower crisis. There are only four staff as against required eight. Before 2012, there were abundant readers as the library was located inside the town. But, their presence has declined due to changed location. We can't go for publicity due to budgetary crunch."
Higher authorities have been informed of the matter and they assured of taking steps very soon, she added.