The Kitab Khana-e-Ama Library in Kabul

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Kitab Khana-e-Ama is one of the oldest libraries in Kabul, and currently stores more than 160,000 books.

Many of the books in the library are very old, according to the head of the library.

The library also publishes books. and one of the books was written by Mirza Mohammad Zafaran, a Persian writer, 101 years ago.

The library was established in1343 (solar year). “This is one of the oldest books, named “Chatraz,” that was printed in the Indian subcontinent, and the content of this book is about the Chatraz people, who are from what we now call Nuristan,” said Mohammad Wali, a manager at the library.

The library has seven study sections. “It was founded approximately in 1343 during the reign of Zahir Shah,” said Obaidullah, head of the library.

The library also has pieces of the first Afghan newspaper, named Seraj al Akhbar. Seraj al Akhbar was published in 1919 in the era of King Amanullah Khan.

“The first time it was printed was in 1284 under the management of Malawi Abdul Raof Kandahari,” said Abdul Wahed, an employee of the library.

Dozens of youth—most of them students—come to the library each day. “We can find our goals in life with study, we can find the path of our life,” said Ahmad Milad, a student.

Meanwhile, Charmaghz Cultural and Services Organization has resumed activities in Kabul after a longtime halt following the rapid fall of Kabul to the Islamic Emirate.

Charmaghz is a small organization that provides teaching to children. “I am happy that we have resumed our activities. We pledge that we will provide service to the children in any condition,” said Ahmad Siam Barakati, deputy head of the foundation.

It provides service via a mini-bus in several parts of Kabul from morning to late afternoon. “The environment is better here than in other places. It is quiet and a good place for studying,” said Husna, a teenager.

“We have learned painting, studying and a lot of other things,” said Ismail, 7, a student.

At least 60 percent of the employees are women. “We are trying to make the environment in Charmaghz a shared community for everyone here, because the situation in Afghanistan is very difficult for the children. When they talk, the families don’t let them talk. But we don’t do this. We let the children talk,” said Fakhria Osmani, a member of the organization.

The residents of Kabul welcomed the reopening of Charmaghz libraries.

“It is a good program. It really is a good influence on the children. We appreciate it,” said Fareshta, a resident.

The library includes 600 books in three languages: Pashto, Dari, English. Charmaghz was established in 2018.—Tolonews

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