IMPHAL, April 26: Speaking at a press meet, Manipur Library Association General secretary Dr Ch. Ibohal Singh, drew the attention of the Chief Minister Okram Ibobi Singh for taking up necessary initiatives towards the promotion of Public Library service in Manipur while stating that it is the responsibility of the State to provide free public library service for all.
He said that the association has also submitted a memorandum to the state Chief Minister this morning on the issue.
Elaborating further on the issue, he said that for the very purpose of providing free public library service, the state has enacted “the Manipur Public Libraries Act 1998”.
However, it has not been implemented till date he continued, while noting that the Public Library system which is under the Directorate of Art & Culture comprises of a state Central Library, eight district libraries and a branch library at Bishnupur which are running with acute shortage of professionally trained library staff.
He continued that 144 RRRLF beneficiary voluntary libraries are also in existence without any financial support from the Government and the overall scenario of Public Library system is not satisfactory at all.
He said he had called on the Chief Minister to take up initiatives for the promotion of public libraries in the state:to open a separate Directorate of Public Library Service without much delay as per the Manipur Public Libraries Act 1988″, to appoint a full fledged Chief Librarian of the State Central Library and fill up all the vacant posts of the library: 3 Librarians, 2 Technical Assistants, 2 Counter Attendants and 1 Grade – IV, to appoint District Librarians for all the districts (excepting the Chandel District Library), 1 Technical Assistant. 1 Grade-IV staff for every District Library, to provide financial support of Rs 10,000 (Rupees ten thousand) only per month to all the 144 RRRLF beneficiary voluntary libraries, to establish Divisional/Circle/Branch/Libraries at Moreh, Jiribam, Noney/Nungba, Kangpokpi, Kamjong, Nambol, Pallet, Sekmai, Kakching, Mayang Imphal, Lamshang, Mao/Maram on priority basis.