No plan to shut state library at Ridge, MC assures students

Tribune News Service

Shimla, September 7

The Municipal Corporation today said it had no plans to shut down the state library at The Ridge and turn it into a book café as feared by students and others who frequent the library. “We don’t have any such plan, these people have been misinformed by some individuals,” said MC Mayor Satya Kaundal after some people took to the street to air their apprehension here today.

“All we want to do is renovate the heritage building that houses the library. It is in a dilapidated condition, so much so that glass or wood could fall off from the building and hurt people outside,” said Kaundal.

MC Commissioner Ashish Kohli, too, assured that the MC had no plan to shut down the library even though a new library had been constructed near Vidhan Sabha. “No decision has been taken to shut down the library. We will renovate the building and keep the library running. We are just thinking of creating an additional facility, an elderly club, in the building. It will be a designated space for the elderly to sit and read newspapers etc,” said Kohli. “Also, we may have a provision for tea and coffee. However, all these plans are at a nascent stage, we don’t even have money sanctioned yet for the renovation under Smart City Mission,” said the Commissioner.

The library users, however, apprehend that library may be shut down. “Students come from far to study in this library. If this is shut down, many students will be affected,” said one of the protesters. Apart from the library users, the local CPM unit is also apprehensive about the future of the library. “The MC should sign an agreement with students that it would not close the library post-renovation,” said the CPM. “Also, the management of the library should remain with the Education Department and should not be passed on to the Municipal Corporation,” the party said.

Courtesy: Tribune News Service

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