TN public libraries to get e-facelift at Rs 287 crore
At present as many as 4,650 public libraries were functioning across the State with the government allocating Rs 287.27 crore this year alone.
CHENNAI: In a bid to increase reading habits, especially among the students, the Tamil Nadu government has decided to bring new reforms in the functioning of state-run libraries across all the districts by allocating Rs 287 crore this year.
In addition, the School Education Department also decided to introduce new schemes and programmes for the readers, who use the libraries regularly. At present as many as 4,650 public libraries were functioning across the State with the government allocating Rs 287.27 crore this year alone.
A senior official from the School Education Department told DT Next that the reforms include digitizing and preserving old and rare books, providing library facilities in every village, where the population is more than 1,000 to provide quality reading materials such as books and periodicals in the public libraries, to introduce modern technology in libraries to enhance its services and create new libraries with the latest technology.
Stating that Tamil Nadu is the first state in the country to enact a separate act for public library services, he said to consider making amendments to the Tamil Nadu Public Library Act to suit the current work environment and to improve the functioning of libraries in the state, a high-level committee has been formed recently under the chairmanship of M Rajendran, former vice-chancellor of Tamil University.
He said new schemes, which would be introduced in the libraries, are to create comprehensive audio content for the visually challenged, to promote the children’s writing skills, an award titled ‘Kavimani Award’ has been initiated by the Directorate of Public Libraries, in honour of the writers and Tamil scholars ‘Senthamizh Sirpigal Arangam’ is being set up in Anna Centenary Libary to promote community participation in library activities, readers forum would be organized in public libraries.
“In addition, the speeches of several experts and research activists in the title of ‘TN-talks’ would be uploaded to the website for reaching several Tamil people living across the globe,” he said adding “virtual reality library will be set up in 76 libraries, which is expected to benefit one lakh students every year”.
Pointing out that the Directorate of Public Libraries has also decided to form a new scheme called ‘friends of libraries, the official said this scheme would be implemented with the help of volunteers, who will provide library services to the far-flung areas. “Accordingly, more than 15 lakh readers were expected to benefit from this scheme,” he added.