Wednesday, Sep 03, 2003
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By J.S. Ifthekhar
The plan is to acquire Urdu books available in various colleges in the city, where they are not being utilised. Urdu being an official language in the erstwhile Nizam Government, the city has a rich collection of Urdu books on a wide range of subjects. The biggest collection is said to be at the State Central Library in Afzalgunj. Close to a lakh Urdu books, besides a large number of Persian and Arabic books, are available here. But, over the years, the patronage for these books has come down. Except for research scholars occasionally referring them, general readers are not evincing interest in Urdu books. As a result, the priceless books are simply gathering dust and rotting, it is said.
The condition of Urdu books in other libraries is no different. Osmania University, City College, Nizam College, besides several Government high schools, too, have a large collection of Urdu books. But here too there are no takers. Some of the colleges have no Urdu section, but have a good number of Urdu books. "Therefore, we propose to acquire these books and preserve them. We are prepared to even purchase them if the college authorities are unwilling to part with them free of cost,'' Mr. Masqati has said.
The Academy has already addressed a letter to the Commissioner of Collegiate Education in this regard. A letter has also been written to the Principal of City College, requesting him to hand over Urdu books to the academy. "But so far we have not received any reply,'' says Mr. Masqati.
The academy is scouting for free accommodation to house these books. Otherwise, it plans to keep them at the Shadi Khana being built at Khilwat in the Old City, it is said.
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