RANCHI: In a first, community libraries have been established in all 118 panchayats of Jamtara district after giving a makeover to the old, dilapidated panchayat or school buildings lying unused for several years.
Jamtara Deputy Commissioner, Faiz Aq Ahmed Mumtaz, who had launched the initiative to promote libraries in rural areas, has finally achieved his goal and succeeded in equipping all 118 panchayats with a library building with well stocked books in it.
The idea came to his mind while holding a ‘janta darbar’ in Chengadih Panchayat. A villager pointing at the lack of education facilities said a library could be a great help for youths who have no means to travel to nearby towns to prepare for competitive exams. It striked in his mind that why not make use of the government buildings which were lying unused for several years and started working on it immediately.
“The first such library was set up at Chengaidih panchayat on November 13, last year and then there was no looking back,” said the DC.
Besides making available good books and space to the village communities, these libraries have also proved to be a boon for the girls living in one of the most backward districts of Jharkhand where they are getting an opportunity to get study material at their doorsteps and excel in their career which was not possible earlier as they are not allowed to move out of the village for studies, he added.
Interestingly, on the request of Deputy Commissioner, each of these libraries has been adopted by one teacher. To encourage more and more students to join government jobs, police officials are conducting coaching classes for the students on Sundays while Civil Administration gives classes on Wednesdays.
Ahmed said that the renovated buildings – libraries — have been provided a general set of books, chairs, tables and other amenities through crowd-funding and under the Corporate Social Responsibility funds. “These libraries are then handed over to local villagers for day-to-day management by forming a committee,” added the DC.
According to the DC, it fulfills the dual goal of saving the abandoned buildings and also making available good books and space to the village communities, where the children living the adjacent villages are coming regularly for studies.
“The initiative serves two purposes: the dilapidated buildings are put to use after renovation and, secondly, it develops a community feeling among the villagers, he added,” said Ahmed.
Besides giving the rural youths a space for studies, these libraries have also turned to be a coaching centre for the poor and underprivileged students where they are being provided guidance for competing for different competitive exams by the expert hands.
“We are providing guidance for various competitive exams and conducting regular classes for SSC, Army, para-military forces, Railways and other recruitment drives,” said Librarian at Jiyajori Panchayat Library.
Moinuddin Ansari, who himself is preparing for Railway exams, said that practice tests are also given on every Sunday to assess the capability of students.
According to the information available at the library website --http://jamtaradistrict.in/library, a total of 2875 classes have been conducted so far altogether in these 118 libraries by the best minds in their filed.
Through the website, one can get any information related to them. If anyone is interested to donate books, chairs, tables or any other amenities to these libraries, he or she can approach the concerned person by a single click on the website.