Hyderabad: It might be the only major library in the old city, but the facilities just do not add up to it.
Those visiting the Shahalibanda library are often left searching for basic facilities including furniture and even toilets. And this is in a library that was established way back in 1963. As if this is not enough, the library continues to operate in a rented building. The building, adding to the overflowing cup of woes, is in a dilapidated condition.
The irony is that this library is categorised as a ‘Grade A’ library by the City Grandhalaya Samastha. The library is housed in a building leased out by a local social organisation and has been there since the last 50 years.
“Authorities had promised to construct a bigger building and accommodate the library there. But nothing has happened so far,” says V Shankar Rao, a retired government employee and a regular visitor.
Around 200 people visit the library every day for reading newspapers of different languages. Unfortunately, there are inadequate chairs in the newspaper section.
The situation is no different in the textbook section with the few available chairs being completely damaged.
Habeeb Omer, an assistant professor who visits the library regularly, says there is a shortage of books on English communication skills and fiction novels. “Books for competitive examinations are stocked in the library. But students are now preparing for such exams online. And the library has no computers,” Omer said.
Worst, a few thousand old books including novels, study material, literature in various languages have been dumped in a corner owing to inadequate space. For the record, the library has 61,458 books.
When contacted, librarian Uma Rani said that she was not authorised to speak to reporters about any issues at the libraries. However she said that she had informed higher-ups about the condition and requirements at the library.