Civic bodies prevent Lakshmi's visit to Saraswathi's abode

Civic bodies prevent Lakshmi's visit to Saraswathi's abode

Libraries neglected

waiting for funds: A view of D V Gundappa District Central Libaray. DH Photo

Most of them lack basic infrastructure such as racks to store the books, and many are housed in rented buildings.

The libraries’ plight is thanks to the civic bodies including the Kolar City Municipal Council that have deprived the libriares of their share of taxes. The CMC owes the district central library a whopping Rs 50 lakh in the form of library cess, the tax collected by the urban bodies which is crucial for the sustenance of the library and for purchase of books and furniture. 
According to a letter by the Chief Librarian (July 14, 2010) to the Deputy Commissioner, the details of the library cess arrears since April 2006 are as follows - Kolar CMC - Rs 30 lakh, Bangarpet TMC Rs 4.80 lakh, Malur TMC Rs 8.86 lakh, Mulbagal TMC Rs 2  lakh, Srinivaspur TMC Rs 1.50 lakh. The total dues is Rs 47.20 lakh, said the letter. 

Chief Librarian H R Channakeshava said an estimated library cess of Rs 67.20 lakh is pending from the five civic bodies. Although the respective civic bodies were informed about it on July 4, nothing has come through yet, he told Deccan Herald. 
“The issue was brought to the notice of Deputy Commissioner during a meeting conducted by him in Februrary and June. But the civic bodies expressed helplessness that they would not be able to pay the library cess as they are in dire need of funds,” he complained.  Although these organisations collect library tax from the public the same is not paid to the libraries. Some of the civic  bodies have utilised library cess to other purpose as well, he alleged. 
“With such callous neglect from these organisations, how can one expect the libraries to be in good condition,” he rued. 
Recently, the library officers met the Municipal Administration Director urging him to direct the civic bodies to pay the tax. But nothing has happened yet, he complained. 

Pending dues 

*  Kolar CMC Rs 30 lakh* Bangarpet TMC Rs 4.80 lakh*  Malur TMC Rs 8.86 lakh*  Mulbagal TMC Rs 2 lakh*  Srinivaspur TMC Rs 1.50 lakh

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