New Delhi, August 5: President Draupadi Murmu on Saturday inaugurated the two-day 'Festival of Libraries 2023' at Pragati Maidan here to showcase the richness and diversity of renowned libraries worldwide. The festival aims to promote the modernisation and digitisation of libraries in India while fostering a culture of reading in the country.

During the opening ceremony, President Murmu highlighted the significance of libraries in advancing society and culture. She stressed the need for modernisation and digitisation to bridge the gap between civilisations and make knowledge more accessible. Opposition MPs of INDIA Bloc Meet President Droupadi Murmu, Demand for PM Narendra Modi’s Statement in Parliament on Manipur Issue.

President Inaugurates Festival of Libraries 2023

In line with the Prime Minister's vision, efforts are underway to develop a National Virtual Library, bringing the dream of a single digital library for the nation to reality, she said. President Murmu also acknowledged the profound impact of books and libraries on India's freedom struggle. She recalled the instance when a small book by John Ruskin had a transformative effect on Mahatma Gandhi's ideology.

The President called for more discussions on the importance of books and libraries, emphasising the preservation of manuscripts, and the need for the modernisation of libraries. Proposing a novel approach to popularize libraries, President Murmu suggested transforming them into vibrant community spaces, serving as centres for social gatherings, self-study, and contemplation. President Droupadi Murmu and Maharashtra Governor Ramesh Bais Offer Prayers at Shree Siddhivinayak Temple in Mumbai Today (See Pic).

She underlined that the development of libraries directly correlates with the progress of society and culture, reflecting their level of advancement. Drawing inspiration from the ancient centre of education, Nalanda, the President highlighted the construction and destruction of libraries throughout history, reinforcing the need to safeguard and modernise these invaluable repositories of knowledge.

Union Minister of Culture Arjun Ram Meghwal and Cultural Secretary Govind Mohan were also present on the occasion. The festival also witnessed significant milestones, including the inauguration of a directory of libraries and the signing of a trilateral memorandum of understanding (MoU) among three prominent libraries: Khuda Bakhsh Oriental Public Library in Patna, Rampur Raza Library in UP's Rampur and Maulana Abul Kalam Azad Arabic-Persian Research Institute in Tonk, Rajasthan.

The event commemorated the 250th anniversary of Rampur Raza Library, marking its rich history with a series of captivating exhibitions. To further enrich the literary landscape, a set of books in cursive writing, encompassing 22 local languages, was unveiled during the festival. The two-day unique 'Festival of Libraries 2023' is being organised by the Ministry of Culture at Hall No 5, Pragati Maidan, New Delhi.

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