SAR-I-PUL (Pajhwok): Students and culturists in northern Sar-i-Pul province are complaining about the lack of books and libraries in the province.
They say the access of young people to tbooks and libraries should be maintained in order to promote the book reading culture.
Samim, one of the students of Sar-i-Pul Institute of Higher Education, said: “I’m agriculture department student, when I want to prepare my assignments, I face problems due to lack of required books.”
He said Sar-i-Pul was a remote province where a few public libraries existed, asking the government to enrich the libraries of educational institutions with a variety of books so that students could easily use them in preparing assignments and academic research.
Faisal, a student of Syedabad High School, told Pajhwok: “I’m in 10th grade, I am very interested in reading fiction books, but there is no library in our school to read the books we need, we ask the government to create many libraries for students.”
Faizullah Fayez, a culturist, said problems that plagued the country for the past decades caused less work to be done to develop reading culture among the people.
He added there was a shortage of books in libraries, calling increase in the number of libraries necessary to promote the culture of reading among youth.
Khudaidad Bashramal, the director of the library of Sar-i-Pul Higher Education Institute, acknowledged the students’ complaint and said that in this library there were 3,500 volumes of books in the fields of mining, geology and education, and up to 170 students visited the library daily for research and preparation of their assignments.
He added: “In 1401, we proposed purchase of 10,000 books, but they are yet to be purchased and they may be purchased this year. The books currently available in the library are used by students, but the library should have at least 100,000 books to meet all needs of students in different fields”.
According to Basharmal, the Sharia department has been recently established in the province, and there are also few books for the department of agriculture.
He hoped their proposal for the purchase of books would be realized and the issue of lack of books in the institute would be addressed.
Basharmal said the main problem at the Higher Education Institute was that there was no separate room for the library. “Students who come to study, there should be a calm and suitable atmosphere for them, something I have discussed with the Ministry of Higher Education.”
On the other hand, Mufti Zabihullah Mohammadi, Deputy Financial and Administrative Director at the Education Department, said no attention had been paid to the culture of book reading during the past 20 years
He said most schools lacked libraries and some schools were provided with books but in absence of a suitable place and library.
He added: “Among the 410 schools in the province, only 26 have libraries at the provincial level, but they neither have many books nor a suitable space for reading. The Department of Education has shared the issue with the Ministry of Education”.
Meanwhile, Ayamuddin Yoldash, acting head of the Department of Information and Culture, said there were three public libraries in Sari Pul, one of which belonged to the Department of Information and Culture and contained 7000 books.
Yoldash acknowledged the lack of books and libraries in the province, but said that in recent years, the culture of reading among young people had weakened due to the wide use of social media and the internet.