TODAY -

Library movement and development in Manipur
- Part 3 -

Ch. Ibohal Singh *

Library at Manipur University (MU) , Canchipur as seen on October 21 2014
Library at Manipur University (MU) , Canchipur as seen on October 21 2014 :: Pix - Deepak Oinam



The need and importance of library and its role to play in the society was conceived in the mind of Atulchandra since long time while he was studying at Driburgargh and Benarus. He was also very much inspired by the nature of Library Movement launched in Bengal in 1925 by the Bengal Library Association headed by Vishwakavi Rabindranath Tagore as the President of the said Association.

He was even communicated with Rabindranath Tagore through letters on some aspects related to social work, art and culture, development of libraries and schools, etc. The dream of Atulchandra became true with the birth of Manipur Club on April 7, 1927.As its founder, he established the club at Kakwa Nameirakpam Leikai, Imphal to provide library services in a formalized manner mostly to the students and youths of the locality and its adjoining areas.

The said Club was equipped with books and other important documents developed through donation from the public. The books were mostly found written in Bengali, Sanskrit, Hindi, English and Manipuri. There was even provision for borrowing the books by the public for home use. Eventhough, the name was Manipur Club, it was almost characterized with certain features of being a public library. More interestingly, the said Club was renamed as Manipur Club Library on the 1st January, 1931 by adding the term "Library".

Shri Konsam Gulab Singh from Thoubal Melaground, Thoubal was the Librarian-cum-keeper of the Library. After the death of Atulchandra's mother Chonu (Juvabati) in 1932, the name of the library has again been changed to Juvabati Memorial Library on April 19, 1933.With an august gathering the building of the library having three rooms was dedicated to the public to provide free public library service .The library hosted a number of programmes at that time.

The first Manipuri Chief Minister of Manipur Shri M.K. Priyobrata Singh and first Librarian (the post has been designated as Chief Librarian later on) of the State Central Library, Imphal Shri Mayengbam Anandamohon Singh , a renowned educationist and writer of Manipur, Shri R.K. Shitaljit Singh, Army Officers from outside Manipur and many others enthusiastically donated invaluable books to the Library.

The library also developed literature on 2nd World War, Newspapers, Radio, etc and the same were made available to the public. Even tale-tale was introduced in the library. Shri Atulchandra himself read out newspapers and made the public listened to it. The Library, however, got many setbacks through different phases due to many factors.

Today the overall management and functioning of the same is under the control of the Manipur Foundation, Imphal. The Organization uses to observe the 10th September, birth day of Atulchandra as Manipur Library Day since recent past.

6. Pioneering Efforts but a Missing Link

After the establishment of the Manipur Club by Atulchandra in 1927, some commendable pioneering efforts from individuals and general public towards public library movement of the state were also made during 1930-1950. These include the establishment of Imphal Reading Club (1930) at Moirangkhom, Imphal, Library established by Shri M.K. Priyobratta Singh ( First Manipuri Chief Minister of Manipur) at Sagolband near Khaplangba Mandir since 1933, Chitrangada Library (1934) at Imphal, Imphal Public Library (1934) near Uripok Chakrikom, Imphal, Manipur Public Library (1950) at Bir Tikendrajit Road, Imphal. However, almost all these libraries became extinct due to many reasons. This is, in fact, a missing link in the history of the library movement of Manipur.

7. Initiatives of the Government

The initiatives of the Government towards the development of public library in Manipur came a bit late in the state with the establishment of District Library and Children Library -cum -Museum in 1958. It was followed by the establishment of Netaji Memorial Library (1968) at INA Complex, Moirang; upgradation of the District Library to the status of the State Central Library (1970); establishment of district libraries in different districts of the state such as: Ukhrul, Senapati, Tamenglong,and Churachandpur (1974), Chandel(1977), one branch of the State Central Library at Ningthoukhong for Bishnupur District (1991), Thoubal (1997) and Imphal West and Imphal East (2006).

The overall affairs of the public library matters in the state is under the Department of Art and Culture. For the sake of the convenience of Administration, the management of the public libraries in the hill districts of Manipur has been handed over to the Autonomous District Councils (ADCs), though the same is under the Department of Art and Culture of the State.

7.1 Recent Initiatives

Of the recent initiatives of the state government towards development of public libraries can be mentioned about:

i) Establishment of Sub-divisional libraries in respect of a) Jiribam, b) Kangpokpi, c) Moreh. Construction of building for these libraries have already been completed which have started since 2012-13.

ii)Construction of new buildings in respect of district libraries of Churachandpur, Senapati and Thoubal since 2013-14.

iii) Proposal to extend the library building in respect of Chandel, Imphal East and Imphal West districts.

iv) Making Art and Culture Department a major Department under which more provisions have been incorporated for the promotion of public library services.

vi) Approval to recruit library staff to man the libraries soon.

8. Efforts of the Voluntary Organisations

The role of different NGOs, Voluntary Organisations, etc. for the cause of library movement in Manipur cannot be ignored at all. Around such 300 (three hundred) Organisations of the state are organizing libraries with or without assistance from the Government, RRRLF, and other Agencies. They are, as a basic component of the public library system, playing an important role in the movement as well as rendering services to the rural masses at local level. As on now a total of 144 such libraries are recognized as RRRLF beneficiary libraries enjoying facilities like Book, Furniture, etc.

9. Contribution of RRRLF

The Raja Rommohun Roy Library Foundation (RRRLF), Kolkata has been playing a vital role in the process of development and promotion of library movement in the state, as done in other parts of the country. A separate wing under the name of RRRLF, sponsored by the Department of Culture, Ministry of Human Resources Development, Government of India, was open at the State Central Library, Imphal since 1978.

The state started its participation in various schemes of the Foundation since 1981-82 onwards. The Foundation has rendered financial assistance under its Matching and Non-matching schemes. Under these two schemes, the Foundation has provided assistance towards procurement of Books, Almirahs, T.V. sets; Organization of book fairs, Orientation Training Courses, Construction of building for the libraries run by the NGOs. Etc.

Besides, MALA has been organizing seminars every year under the sponsorship of RRRLF. Previously the State and RRRLF share was in the ratio of 50:50, but now the pattern has been changed to 10:90. As such the role of the Foundation towards development of public library in the state is quiet commendable. The Foundation also provides assistance to the Manipur Library Association (MALA) to organize Seminars, Conferences, Awareness programmes, etc.

To be continued......


* Ch. Ibohal Singh, Ph.D., wrote this article for Imphal Times
This article was posted on October 21, 2016.


* Comments posted by users in this discussion thread and other parts of this site are opinions of the individuals posting them (whose user ID is displayed alongside) and not the views of e-pao.net. We strongly recommend that users exercise responsibility, sensitivity and caution over language while writing your opinions which will be seen and read by other users. Please read a complete Guideline on using comments on this website.


LATEST IN E-PAO.NET
  • Mova Cave, Hungpung, Ukhrul #1 : Gallery
  • Expanding Economy Beckons :: Speech
  • Before trains arrive, must read
  • Impact of the Shirui Lily festival
  • Securing Wi-Fi: Negating doorstep threat
  • Blood donation drive in North East
  • Expecting changes in dealing SoO
  • Scourge of drug trafficking
  • Tribal Cultural Festival #2 : Gallery
  • Let's talk about our children today
  • A blow to image boosting
  • Fear and Superstition
  • Latrine :: Poem
  • Letter to JS-MHRD from MUTA
  • JS-MHRD did not meet with MUTA
  • Drawing on Energy Efficiency
  • MU impasse: Attention Mr. Prime Minister
  • Admission time : Sky high cut off
  • Great June Uprising @Kekrupat #2 : Gallery
  • Yoga Day: Celebrating Your Health
  • Chak-hao - black gold of Manipur
  • In response to the culture of shaming
  • 3rd Documentor Imphal
  • 4th International Day of Yoga by AR
  • Appeals for Resolution of MU Crisis
  • Recommendation to control Flood damages
  • International Yoga Day at Loktak PS
  • After Flood : Introspection about the future
  • MUSU & JAC : Hot issues before the Govt
  • Zeliangrong orphaned by Nationalism #2
  • General Thangal Eco Park : Gallery
  • Letter to President on Crisis at MU
  • Precision medicine & life sciences
  • Black topping-can ground leveling be behind
  • Condemns security force intrusion in MU
  • Developer wanted at LMP, Konjeng Leikai
  • AR gears up for International Yoga Day
  • NPF rejoinder to NDPP : 20 June
  • Rejoinder by Dr. Shurhozelie : 20 June
  • For a little bit more
  • Deadline of 5 days time set : MU crisis
  • Garlic Festival @Ukhrul #4 :: Gallery
  • Flood in Imphal [14 June] #3 : Gallery
  • Inungshi, Gaichanglungliu :: eMing
  • Taking 'Hau' Music to Rest of World
  • Kakching bags cleanest city in NE Award
  • JRF (Junior Research Fellow) at IBSD
  • Oxfam India launches emergency response
  • VC, MU - Resign immediately :: MUTA
  • Inner Line Permit (ILP) Demand :: Timeline
  • Translation of ancient Manipur texts begin
  • Pre Yoga Capsule organized
  • NDPP Rejoinder on 19 June
  • NPF Youth Wing Rejoinder on 19 June
  • Favouring digital govt : still a Virtual dream
  • June 18 Anniv : Consult all stakeholders
  • Great June Uprising @Kekrupat #1 : Gallery
  • Binota Thokchom at BRICS Young Scientist
  • The Merger of Manipur
  • Improving school management in Manipur
  • Pros & cons of screening tests
  • NPF Rejoinder on 18th June
  • Nagaland CM statement on Aboi ambush
  • June 18 significance: Still living on prayer
  • Need to identify one's strength
  • 18 Immortal Souls Remembered : Flash
  • The Great June Uprising : Read all about it
  • The Pitfalls of Identity Politics
  • Naga Peace Process :: News Timeline
  • All his sons :: Poem
  • Citizenship (Amendment) Bill, 2016
  • Eid bring cheer in flood hit areas
  • Willong Khullen, Maram #1 : Gallery
  • Eyek Tamba :: Learn Manipuri script
  • Defending the environmental defenders
  • Delusion in self - cause of worry
  • Road to Russia: FIFA World Cup
  • It must be love :: Poem
  • 'Future of Naga people is bleak'
  • Give a miss call to Amnesty
  • 'Naga area' bandh on June 18
  • Dzuko valley #4 :: 360 Panorama View
  • Flood in Imphal [14 June] #2 : Gallery
  • Id-Ul-Fitr Festival
  • Letter to PM Modi on Naga Talks
  • Greetings on Eid-Ul-Fitr
  • Rejoinder to NPF statement
  • Rejoinder to Nagaland Chief Minister
  • Flood relief continue on 3rd day
  • India-Vietnam Youth Dialogue 2018
  • MU debacle: Why would it be left unnoticed
  • Spirit of World Cup : Brazil to Russia
  • NEC to come under Home Ministry
  • Manipur NGO hosts summit on LGBTQ
  • Flood in Imphal [14 June] #1 : Gallery
  • Women Struggle in Self-Determination
  • 14 June- World Blood Donor Day
  • Naga Integration not possible- NPF react
  • Naga Integration is not possible- CM Rio
  • Relief work in flood affected areas
  • A day which keeps our spirit alive
  • Ranked 320 in the country : MU
  • Flood in Imphal [13 June] #2 : Gallery
  • Sovereignty Struggles in Northeast #5
  • Be alert: It's admission time
  • Yin and Yang
  • Watermelon beauty benefits
  • Temp accommodation for Aligarh students
  • Wrath of Mother Nature: Why challenge..
  • 60 pc is no longer first class : 95 pc
  • Flood in Imphal [13 June] #1 : Gallery
  • Sanamahi Laihui & Sanamahi Laining
  • Kuhi- Essential plant for Nungbi pottery
  • Climate justice is integral to development
  • The bridge :: Poem
  • Lt S Vijaya Devi felicitated
  • Then : Indifferent :: Now : Hyper sensitive
  • Phumdigi Tantha : Dance Drama : Gallery
  • Grief at Xavier Rutsa's demise
  • Modi's India: A descend into Ochlocracy
  • The Philippine Experience
  • Cry of a Dying River #33 :: Poem
  • Community Iftar at Moijing, Cachar
  • Candle Light at DU over Assam lynching
  • Demand replacement of Manipur Univ VC
  • The Tragedy of Higher education
  • Unacceptable points spelt out
  • Teinem Luira Phanit @Ukhrul #3: Gallery
  • RPL-PMKVY trainees @Hojai : Gallery
  • Manipur Sports University in UP ?
  • Coloniality of the Postcolonial
  • Yellow leaves in the autumn :: Poem
  • Prof N Irabanta-distinguished academician
  • Leadership matters
  • Artificial turf for budding talents
  • 2 municipal bodies in NE awarded
  • Who is Arambam Somorendra ?
  • Manglandasu Nang - OST :: e-pao Radio
  • Shirock 2018 - Shirui Lily Fest #3 : Gallery
  • Linthoi's "The Tales of Kanglei Throne" #2
  • Grass root challenge- Education in hills
  • Earth does not belong to us...
  • Sita Mata as test-tube baby
  • What happen to VIP Culture Mr. CM
  • Merchants of education
  • Laitonjam Rajnikanta : Profile
  • A blessing to see :: Poem
  • Sovereignty Struggles in Northeast #4
  • Difference between Hinduism & Hindutva
  • How to choose the perfect fragrance
  • Iftaar party at Lilong
  • Bitter truth of Manipuri society
  • MU, NSU, IGNTU : Students at the centre
  • Amuktang-Ga Haikho #1 : eRang
  • Sangai Veterans' Football #2 : Gallery
  • Pony : A Cavalry Horse Par Excellence #2
  • Issues that keep Manipur burning
  • Cry of a Dying River - 32 :: Poem
  • CM & AR interaction with villagers
  • Certification of PMKVY trainees of Hojai
  • Christian appeals for Peace in Shillong
  • How safe are our women?
  • Riders put up by JAC for talk
  • Khangkhui Cave in Ukhrul #3 : Gallery
  • Pluralism, Democracy & Ethnic Relation #2
  • Irom Sharmila meets with Mehbooba Mufti
  • JRF @ Mizoram University (Biotechnology)
  • Tobacco and heart disease
  • Understanding SOWA - RIGPA #2
  • Campaign "to End Child Sexual Abuse"
  • Implementation of 7th Pay
  • Indigenous street vendor sing gi wafam
  • The crumbling Manipur University
  • Kang Tournament @ Yaiskul : Gallery
  • Zeliangrong orphaned by Nationalism #1
  • A rainy night :: Poem
  • HSLC Exam is the start! What next?
  • 1528 cases of fake encounter
  • Linthoi's "The Tales of Kanglei Throne" #1
  • Handloom Weaver @Bishnupur : Gallery
  • Shirock 2018 - Shirui Lily Fest #2 : Gallery
  • Hinduism in Manipur : Political Perspective
  • All the World and his Wife :: Poem
  • Tribal Cultural Festival #1 : Gallery
  • Women in CCpur turn to self-help groups
  • Purul Paoki Wrestling : Gallery
  • Sangai Veterans' Football #1 : Gallery
  • Khangminashi IV (Lecture) : Report
  • Seminar at MU - Hinduism in Manipur'
  • Evolution of The Meetei State
  • Heartbreak at Ukhrul: Unfolding Shirock
  • State Level Khurpui-Lam Festival: Gallery
  • June Calendar for Year 2018 :: Tools
  • School Girls Basketball #2 : Gallery
  • Where is Manipur....???
  • 'Manipur' in Google maps : Gallery
  • The Killing Fields - 2013-18 : News Timeline
  • Mama Poktabi :: Funga Wari
  • Veterans Football Tournament #2 : Gallery
  • Shirock 2018 - Shirui Lily Fest #1 : Gallery
  • Sougrakpam Vijaya makes history sailing...
  • Arunachali unfurled Salai Taret at Mt Everest
  • Panthoiba: 2nd Rank- class XII, Uttarkhand
  • Ras Leela @JNMDA Day : Gallery
  • HSLC 208 Exam Toppers : Gallery
  • HSLC 2018 :: Toppers Listing
  • HSLC 2018 :: Check Result
  • HSLC :: Statistical/Subject Topper
  • HSLC 2018 :: External
  • Poumai Purul Hiimai Paoki #2 : Gallery
  • Kakching Garden :: 360 Panorama View
  • Folk Dance Festival #5 : Gallery
  • Aerial view from Chingmeirong : Gallery
  • Curtain Raising- Sangai Fest 2017: Gallery
  • Lainingthou Lai Lam thopka #2 : Gallery
  • Re-visiting Khangkhui caves in Ukhrul
  • Gardening @Ema Keithel #2: Gallery
  • Front Page Photo 2018 #2: Gallery
  • Pakhangba Cheng Hongba #2 : Gallery
  • Steelheart @ Shirock , Ukhrul #3 : Gallery
  • A. Halim Chowdhury: A Profile
  • Class XII Exam Toppers : Gallery
  • Class XII Result : Science Toppers
  • Class XII Result : Arts Toppers
  • Class XII Result : Commerce Toppers
  • HSE Result 2018 : District Wise
  • HSE Result 2018 : Highest Marks
  • HSE Result 2018 : Science Stream
  • HSE Result 2018 : Arts Stream
  • HSE Result 2018 : Commerce Stream
  • Temples of Manipur : Gallery
  • Recipients of Akademi Awards for 2014
  • Old Manipuri Movie #1 :: eRang Classic
  • SPONSORED ADS