VC says students’ accessibility to books being ensured
Allama Iqbal Open University (AIOU) library is now kept open 7 days a week and the facility is available even to those outside the AIOU. AIOU Vice Chancellor Dr Shahid Siddiqui said this on the inaugural day of the 3-day book fair held here at the university campus on Thursday. The book fair aims at strengthening library network and developing ‘Friendship with book-culture’.
A large number of writers, publishers and sellers of books from various parts of the country are participating in the festival which was arranged by the Central Library of AIOU.
Vice Chancellor said the university’s library was being developed as the most modern one for providing strong support to researchers and academicians. The university is also trying to provide best library facilities to the readers through online automatic digital system. Accessibility to the library’s books is being ensured, so that the people sitting at their homes and offices could take benefit of it. Scanning and uploading of over 5,000 thesis have been completed so that the people all over the world could get access to them through internet.
The festival is part of the University’s efforts to promote research-based and social-literary activities. Library, Dr. Siddiqui further said serves as best information provider and it is considered a brain of any educational institution for research work. About the books, Dr Siddiqui said printing material still received high importance across the world inspite of IT’s revolution.
Through the books, the people could enrich themselves with the life-time experience of the past’s dignitaries for future learning. Any civilized society is known by the books-reading habit of the people of particular country and the region, he added.
The inaugural ceremony of the festival was also addressed by the chief librarian of AIOU Muhammad Umar Khan. He gave a presentation on expansion’s plan of the Library.
Later, talking to Pakistan Observer a number of students and visitors expressed their pleasure that AIOU was organizing something to address the ‘food for thought’ and not ‘food for stomach.’ Shazia a student in Masters of History said CDA and the Metropolitan Corporation of Islamabad seem more interested in establishing food parks, restaurants and developing new sectors. Little consideration is given to building libraries on smaller scale, say, for every two sectors there should be a library, she said. The real job of of a metropolitan corporation is to take care of civic, civil and intellectual demands of their citizens, but the city fathers seem more interested in real estate projects than such needs. Books are not only a source of knowledge they also provide us immense relief and act as soother, another student of literature, Hanif said. They hoped other universities and institutions will also hold similar book fairs and bring students closer to books.