MYSURU: A day after the library, set up by labourer Syed Isaaq (62) was burnt down by unidentified people, help poured in from everywhere to help him rebuild it. The New Indian Express had on Saturday reported about the library, containing over 11,000 books, including 3,000 copies of the Bhagavad Gita and a thousand copies of the holy Quran and the Bible, being torched by miscreants.
Unfazed by the turn of events, Isaaq had vowed to rebuild the library from the scratch. He even visited the site on Saturday morning to provide newspapers to his regular readers. After reading the report in TNIE, Primary and Secondary Education Minister S Suresh Kumar personally called up Isaaq and offered help to rebuild the library.
Commenting on the incident and expressing solidarity with Isaaq, Suresh Kumar told TNSE that Isaaq will be offered helped soon and promised to visit the spot in a week. Later in the day, with the news going viral, an online fundraiser on popular crowdfunding site Keto.org, set up by Fathaheen Misbah, Technology Lead at Infosys, garnered support from across the globe, raising Rs 7.3 lakh in just six hours.
Want library to be a public facility: Isaaq
Speaking to TNSE, Misbah said books that were burned were treasure troves which had been of help to many in the neighbourhood. Isaaq’s commitment, who worked odd jobs to maintain the library, had prompted her to start the fundraiser, she said. A similar campaign on Milaap fetched another Rs 1 lakh for the cause. Former minister and Chamarajpet MLA B Z Zameer Ahmed also extended help by handing over Rs 2 lakh through his supporters in Mysuru.
Help also came in the form of books, after academician Muzaffar Assadi appealed to people through a social media post to donate one book each to rebuild Isaaq’s library. Similarly, a few publications from Bengaluru also announced that they will provide books while Karnataka Rakshana Vedike members, who met Isaaq in Mysuru, handed over copies of Indian Constitution, Bhagavad Gita, Quran and Bible to him.
Overwhelmed by the response, Isaaq said that come what may, the library should come up at the same spot. “People from this neighbourhood are deprived of such facilities. I want them to read and learn, especially Kannada. I do not want my name on the library, let it be a public facility,” he said. Meanwhile, the city police have formed a special team to nab the miscreants.