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Posted at: Sep 2, 2015, 1:18 AM; last updated: Sep 2, 2015, 12:56 AM (IST)

Public library thrown open at Guru Nanak Bhawan

Public library thrown open at Guru Nanak Bhawan
Mayor Harcharan Singh Gohalwaria (sitting in the centre) during the inauguration of the Municipal Library at Guru Nanak Bhawan in Ludhiana on Tuesday. Tribune Photo: Himanshu Mahajan

Gurvinder Singh

Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, September 1

The public library finally opened at Guru Nanak Bhawan today. Mayor Harcharan Singh Gohalwaria and MC Commissioner GK Singh inaugurated the library, which houses nearly 16,000 books with a seating capacity of 48 people and four desks, especially for children.

Two computers have been placed in the library for accessing e-books and searching online. Two more computers would be added shortly, Gohalwaria said.

The MC library on the Gill Road has been closed and the books from that library have also been shifted here. The MC Commissioner said new books worth Rs 1.13 lakh were purchased by the MC during an exhibition organised by the National Book Trust at Punjabi Bhawan recently.

He quoted Mahatma Gandhi and said books at homes and libraries in towns were like windows through which the light of knowledge comes.

He said 25 newspapers and 40 magazines would be available in the air-conditioned library, adding that they would try to keep the library open on all seven days so that residents could have access to it during weekends as well.

Gohalwaria said an annual budget of Rs 10 lakh would be earmarked for the maintenance of the library apart from an additional Rs 10 lakh for the purchase of new books every year.

He said depending on the response of the people, the seating capacity would also be increased in future.

He said the MC would take suggestions from people and members to make further improvements and also about the kind of books and magazines to be added to the library.

He said CCTV cameras would be installed soon so that girls and senior citizens feel secure.

Earlier, the Mayor had expressed his inability to complete the library because of shortage of funds, but today he said he was elated to inaugurate it as per his promise.

All you need to know

The membership will cost Rs 50 and the annual fee will be Rs 15. The library will open from 9.00 am to 5 pm during weekdays. Members can borrow two books for two weeks and an old magazine for a week from the library.

No railing

The library is in the first floor, above the auditorium and a staircase guides you towards it. But it does not have a railing, lift or ramp for senior citizens so far. On being asked, Mayor Harcharan Singh Gohalwaria said a lift or a slider would be built for making the library accessible for senior citizens soon.

A peep into history

The public library first came up in 1858 in Zone A, but was later shifted near the local bus stand. Its condition was bad and there was a demand for its improvement as it hardly had any footfall.

Unique architecture

The unique architecture of the Guru Nanak Bhawan roof, having an array of triangular windows in the ceiling, makes the library well-lit. Ample natural light enters the building and there is no need for extra lights during the day. Also, new furniture has been purchased for the library. Officials said an e-catalogue of books would be available soon.

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