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Centre plans to set up 7,000 libraries

The Centre is planning to set up about 7,000 libraries having computers with internet facility across the country, a large chunk of which may go to rural areas.



New Delhi: With an aim to encourage reading
habit among people, the Centre is planning to set up about
7,000 libraries having computers with internet facility across
the country, a large chunk of which may go to rural areas.

These libraries will be opened as part of the National
Mission on Libraries (NML), the Centre`s initiative to
revitalise the public library movement in the country.

Sources said the Culture Ministry has sent a set of
recommendations in this regard to Prime Minister Manmohan
Singh, who holds charge of the ministry.

The new libraries, if the proposals are accepted, will be
equipped with modern gadgets and broadband connectivity
besides being networked with other leading libraries,
educational and cultural institutions.

The recommendations were made as it was felt that these
facilities are necessary in this age of technology and that is
the only way to bring back people to libraries.

The ministry has also recommended that a major chunk of
the about 7,000 proposed new libraries should go to the rural
areas to benefit the students there, who are deprived of such
facilities, the sources said.

They said it has been recommended that the new libraries
may be set up in rural areas, especially near schools which do
not have such facility.

"The Ministry will also be working in tandem with the HRD
Ministry in this sector and we have asked them to identify
schools in rural areas which do not have library facilities,"
the sources said.

They pointed out that establishing libraries near public
schools will encourage students to develop reading habits.
Besides, the library staff will also be trained to handle the
technical devices.

The sources also said the recommendations include
providing special services to differently-abled people in
the libraries.

The ministry is also planning to give a complete
make-over to public libraries across the country as part of
the NML.

"Public libraries across the country will benefit from
the Mission which will bring in modern technical equipment to
the libraries. These libraries in the country have not seen
such things," the sources said.

The proposals include broadband connectivity to public
libraries and networking them with other libraries and the
ones in reputed institutions.

Bureau Report

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