On the occasion of its 74th Foundation Day, publishing house Rajkamal Prakashan organised its first Pustak Mitr Abhiyan at Daryaganj Police Station on February 28. As part of the initiative, books were distributed to police representatives.
Managing director Ashok Maheshwari says that for the last two years on Rajkamal Prakashan’s foundation day, they have been organising Bhavishya Ke Swar. Seven young people, excellent in fields like writing, books and social work, would be invited to talk about their jobs, possibilities, and the impact of books on their lives.
“This programme was well received as we focused on topics such as adivasis in the field of writing, focus on languages and regional dialects and their status, what can be done in children education, especially slum children, and more. But this year, it was difficult to physically hold the event due to the restrictions. So, we came up with Pustak Mitr Abhiyan, and decided to visit rehab centres, orphanages and ashrams, and even the police, as they all work for the welfare of people.”
Maheshwari wants people to first get the hang of reading books. “That’s why we will create a mini library at the police station,” he adds.
Books related to police such as Khaki Mein Insaan by Ashok Kumar, Gahan hai Andhkara, Gandhiji’s Satya Ke Prayog, Himalaya ki Yatra, Ishq Koi News Nahi by Vineet Kumar, and some children books were given to the police staff for their kids.
“We met the kids at Delhi’s child welfare center at Kucha Chalan, the girl child welfare centre at Parda Bagh, and at a study centre in a slum near Yamuna Khadar, and asked them why they want to study. They gave interesting answers. They even decided to share books. Stationery items were distributed to the slum kids. A book bank will be made at the welfare centres. We also went to a Mahila Ashram in Faridabad,” adds Maheshwari.
The publishing house plans to visit more such centres in the coming months. “We got a positive response. On Wednesday (March 3), we will go to PAC Battalion in Ghaziabad, and talk to their jawans. Only 500 books were distributed during the first leg, but this trip we will carry over 800 books. We will visit these centres once a month. Children are our future, and the path to a good future passes through books,” adds Maheshwari.
Book distributions drives, feel Maheshwari, are not enough to create a dynamic shift towards voracious reading but it’s an important step, and to encourage them is also a significant aspect. “To ensure that, our teams will visit regularly and talk to them,” he concludes.