Y.S. RANA, CHANDIGARH : Like an employee time has come to give ‘farewell’ to the first mobile library bus of Chandigarh. After serving the Chandigarh Administration for 36 years, the city mobile library van will soon off the road. While talking to Daily Post the official of the Administration said that it has been decided and proposal to purchase a new van was sent to higher authority.
Mr Suraj P Nagpal, Senior Librarian of T.S Central State Library, Chandigarh said that the first mobile library service was started in Chandigarh in 1977 when a van was put to service on December 31, 1977 by the then chief commission, Chandigarh, Mr T.N. Chaturvedi to promote an interest in reading especially among rural folk. He further said that it catered to people living in far off sectors, villages and slums of Chandigarh. All over the world libraries strive to make themselves accessible to the users and mobile library vans were the best option, he added.
The city mobile library van has been the way to provide service especially in rural areas. The overall aim of this master’s thesis was to take library at the doorstep of the rural populace of Chandigarh, said Mr Nagpal. The most conspicuous difference between a library van and a library building is that it goes to the users instead vice versa and reaches to immobile children and old people, says he. It covers sparsely populated villages of the city and takes 100 of books 5-day in a week as per schedule.
Mr Nagpal claimed that mobile library in combination with branch libraries gave a better service than those could every provided. Long ago horse-drawn carriage worked as mobile library. Later on more mobile services appeared in England, USA and Germany. In 1950 book buses begin to provide library service to rural areas in England.