India’s first tram library for children opens up in West Bengal

Mad4Change By Harshita Singh | 2 min read

Over the years, a major shift has happened from books to technology. Fewer children read books. The focus on video games and television has increased. To promote reading habits amongst children, the government of West Bengal introduced a tram library which is a library on wheels. The motivational story is about the efforts put in by the transport corporation of West Bengal to inculcate reading habits in children.

Opening Up the Tram Library

Those trams were not in use since a cyclone ravaged the city in May. The transport corporation of West Bengal, with the help of Apeejay Anand Children’s Library, turned the tram into a library for children. The news of a library has brought joyful news for the bibliophiles. The library contains up to 1000 books. A route that the tram library will run on has almost 30 educational institutes along its route including – Presidency University, Calcutta University, Hindu School, Hare School, Calcutta Girls’ School, and Scottish Church College.

Tram Library for Children

It was launched on the occasion of children’s day on 14 November 2020. It is known by the name of ‘Kolkata’s Young Reader’s Tramcar.’ The tramcar is a single air-conditioned coach. The tram will run on the Shyambazar Esplanade and Esplanade Gariahat route. The idea behind the initiative is to motivate the little ones to reconnect with ink and paper.

Activities for Children

A lot of activities have been planned for young readers and children. The activities would include dramatized reading, music, book launches, poetry sessions, etc. The activities will attract and motivate young minds to invest additional time in reading. The library has also been painted by local artists and it further adds to the charm of the library. The oxford bookstore has helped in curating the right books for the library.

Tram Library
Image Source – Facebook

Facilities Available

Entry to the tram library is free for children 18 and below. Adults are expected to pay the normal tram charges. Free pens are provided to those who enter the library on wheels for the first time. It has around 1000 books divided into different sections. Books on various competitive exams such as WBCS, GMAT, and GRE. Children can view each section and choose the book that they like.

The tram runs from morning to evening. Wi-Fi facility is also available in the library. The WI-Fi enables the readers to access ebooks besides the normal books available. Books of national and international publications are available. Some novels are fictional, whereas others are from the non-fictional category.

Idea Behind the Tram Library

The idea of the tram library is a Make-in-India success story of the efforts of the government. Mad4India covered the story because it promotes good reading habits in children which, is essential for cognitive growth. The trams in Kolkata are viewed as an important part of its heritage. By modifying the trams, the heritage of the state is also being preserved.

tram library idea
Image Source – Facebook

Purpose Behind the Tram Library

The purpose behind the tram library was to attract the residents of Kolkata to the tram. Tram is an important part of the heritage of Kolkata. Regular sanitization is done in the Tram to ensure safety from coronavirus. The initiative hopefully will help children to develop a habit of reading.

If you like this story, then read about the MediCAB that delivers portable hospitals to rural areas for treatment and care of COVID patients and can be set up by 4 people in 2 hours.

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