Kerala Library Advisory Committee members visit SPS Library
Director Libraries briefs delegations about public library scenario in JK
Post by RK News on Sunday, June 18, 2023
Srinagar, June 17: Kerala Library Advisory Committee members visited SPS Library complex here on Saturday.
The visiting delegation comprised Legislators, K Ansalan and K J Maxi; Secretary Kerala, Niyamasabha, A M Basheer; Librarian, M R Indu, Assistant Librarian, Shameena S and other officials of the Kerala Legislative Assembly.
The members of the delegation visited Oriental Research Library and various sections of SPS Library. They also interacted with the library users present in the complex.
The visiting delegation appreciated the huge and diverse collection of Manuscripts and Rare Books maintained by Oriental Research Library.
The Director, Libraries & Research, J&K, Mohammad Rafi gave a brief overview of the Public Library scenario in J&K and the new initiatives being taken by the Department to reinvent Public Libraries as multi-faceted hubs for youth development and empowerment.
The Director Libraries said that J&K has the distinction of having oldest libraries in the region including SRS Library Jammu established in 1879 and SPS Library Srinagar established in 1898. He said these two central libraries have a collection of around 1 lakh titles including rare books and manuscripts.
He said as a part of this initiative free reference books and study material has been made available in Public Libraries across J&K for various Competitive Examinations including Civil Services, NEET, JEE, CAT, CLAT, GMAT, SSB etc. He said given the overwhelming demand by the students, the Libraries Department has, on the recommendation of UT-Level Library Advisory-cum-Purchase Committee (UTLLAPC), made available around 350 titles of free reference books/study material in its libraries to help students, especially those who can’t afford to purchase such costly material, study and prepare for various competitive examinations.
He said it is heartening to note that the Public Libraries in J&K are witnessing a steady increase in the number of library users and reading rooms of all the major libraries remain fully occupied.
He said the Department has embarked on massive infrastructure upgradation of libraries including automation and digitization.
The Director Libraries said that the Digital Libraries concept is a part of the project on how to reposition the public libraries in an environment of new social and technological challenges. “This novel project is aimed at rediscovering how the public libraries move forward and adapt to new technologies, new communities, new user-needs and information behaviours,” he said and added that these libraries would be different from the traditional public libraries by offering both formal and informal spaces for the readers with a variety of IT-enabled facilities.
The Director Libraries said that the Oriental Research Library (ORL), Srinagar established in 1904, is a repository of around 6000 rare manuscripts in 17 languages encompassing varied fields. The library also has around 5000 rare books and miniature paintings.
He said the manuscript collection of ORL is a treasure-trove of religious, philosophical, historical, literary and scientific writings.
The collection, he said, is rich in classical languages like Persian, Sanskrit and Arabic. These languages have left deep impression on Kashmiri language by conditioning its growth in terms of forms and scope, he said and added that the Sanskrit, language of court and culture in 9th and beginning of 10th century in Kashmir contributes number of religious, aesthetic and poetic articulations and are preserved in ORL.