"Only 4-5 people visit Khilgoan's Begum Rokeya Memorial Library on
average a day. Founders blame this on the location of the library that
has to be shifted at least once." continues Prothom Alo (English).
|People reading at Begum Rokeya Memorial Library. |
Photo: Prothom Alo
"A library has to be near main roads; our one was located in that kind of place but we have to shift it due to fund constraints of running it at a busy place," said one of them, Rahat Ahmed.
Backed by left-leaning student activists, Sadrul Hasan, Pronobendu Dev Ray, Bidita Mandal, Afzal Rana and others thought reading books is the key to awakening of national spirit.
And the library -- Begum Rokeya Memorial Library -- came into being in 2007. The founders wanted to pay their respects by naming it after Begum Rokeya, the pioneer of women's emancipation in this part of the world.
Some donated money and others donated books for the library. It began with 500 books, and the number has now gone up to 2,800.
This library has books under the category of literature, philosophy, economics, science, history and translated works.
"School students mostly look for science books, novels of Sarat Chandra Chattopadhaya and juvenile fictions of liberation war," said Dalim Al Mamun, member of the library committee.
Forty three permanent members of this library donate money. Around 50 members can borrow books, following recommendations from the permanent members.
Two study circles are arranged every month for better understanding of text and engagement of more people, Anik Kumar Das, a student of Khilgoan Model College, said about the library activities.
Members of this library have to pay the rent of library facilities including space.
However, well-off people of the locality are not much interested in donating money or providing any other support for the library, one of
This library does not either get any government support since it is not registered with the department of public library.
Despite the drawbacks, Rahat Ahmed said there is a good feeling about running this library.
This article, originally printed in Bangla version of Prothom Alo, was rewritten in English by Kohinur Khyum.
Source: Prothom Alo (English)