The Nations are not built on the iron platforms only it needs a stronger and reliable base. No matter how hard metals are but they still get rusted away with time. What saves this strong platform from rusting away is the wisdom of people. The only wise are those who learn. Learning develops skills and capabilities in individuals to develop and prosper. These individuals together form nations. We as a Nation have been through various transitions. After the independence of Pakistan, a literary era of readers and writers emerged. People loved to read, the available libraries were also full. There was a thirst of knowledge or just the interest in reading. We have witnessed that people had broad minds and acceptability for the various school of thoughts. However, disagreements were handled in a mature and sober approach.
Unfortunately, the complete paradigm has shifted after the 1970s and the people started distancing themselves from literature, education, and reading. It is evident in the history that Pakistan has seen the worst violence, riots, and unrest during that time. Our Nation which strived together for a free homeland ironically divided into casts, sects, and regions. The bloodshed and hatred took over.
Now the time has changed again and people are breaking the barriers to unite with each other. The government of Pakistan is also struggling for the peaceful nation building. However, learning is the key to tolerance, harmony, and development. The Higher Education Commission, Punjab Government, and departments such as Pakistan Information technology board are taking innovative measures to promote the culture of reading and research in Pakistan.
E-Library is an initiative of Punjab Information Technology Board and Youth Affairs, Sports, Archeology and Tourism Department under the government of Punjab. The project is designed to promote learning and reading in all the groups of people irrespective of their age, gender and class. Under the project, E-Libraries are established in 20 districts of Punjab. The E-Libraries provide online access to full-text eBooks, eJournals, e-Theses, online reference collections, Nobel laureate collections, documentaries, simulated videos, and other local and international resources. Moreover, the user-friendly Union Catalogue has also developed to make it easy to share and access data.
The Primary Focus of the project is
The project has been designed to meet the present needs to readers and researches. The building not only provides warm and comfortable space for the readers but additional facilities are incorporated to make the learning process more conducive, convenient and interesting. The other major facilities include:
The basic necessities for the readers are books. In this regards, each library facility has around 3,000 books printed in high quality. However, the E-Library provides access to over 200,000 Ebooks, research papers and databases and journals. The Centralized Digital Library has made it furthermore feasible for the students and learners to access reading materials including magazines, journals, research papers, thesis, and books. In addition, the digital Libraries aim to provide:
1. Digitization of documentaries, audios, videos
2. Creation of indigenous resources (e-lectures, videos)
3. Organization of digital information... Metadata standards
4. Information retrieval
5. User interface
6. Archiving and preservation
7. Services and social issue
8. Evaluation and applications to particular areas
The E-Libraries are situated in functionally operational in various cities of Punjab including Rawalpindi, Mianwali, Okara, Attock, Bhakkar, Faisalabad, Gujranwala, Gujrat, Narowal, Vehari, Dera Ghazi Khan, Muzaffar Garh, Bahawalpur, Rahim Yar Khan, and Lahore. However, the E-Library of Lahore is most advanced and equipped with the latest technology. The E-Library not only provides a comfortable environment for reading but it is incorporated with latest devices such as scanners which can preserve and save the data of books in high quality. Moreover, it also possesses an auditorium for 160 attendees which is a great place to arrange, educational gatherings.
This initiative is taken to promote the culture of reading and providing a place to the people of all ages and genders to interact with each other. It is no less a complete community center which is available for the facilitation to students, children, senior citizens altogether. Such measures help to develop the nations physically, mentally and spiritually. It helps to create an environment of peace and a broad mindset which results in harmony and tolerance.
Watch the complete overview to learn more about the E-Library in Career karwan's Interview with Mr. Asif Bilal the Head E Library, Lahore