Donors have raised more than Rs 7 lakh for a daily wage labourer the day after it was reported that his public library in Karnataka’s Mysuru city was burnt down by miscreants on Friday, crowdfunding platform Ketto said. The goal is to collect Rs 10 lakh in 46 days.
Syed Issaq had set up the library in Rajiv Nagar Second Stage near Ammar Masjid in the city, The New Indian Express reported on Frday. Residents of the area were given free access to the library, which had a collection of 11,000 books.
Isaaq said that he was informed about the fire at 4 am by a man who lived next to the library. “When I rushed to the library which is just a stone’s throw away distance, I could only see them being reduced to ashes,” the 62-year-old labourer told The New Indian Express.
Following a complaint, the police have registered a first information report under Section 436 (relating to punishment for mischief by fire or any explosive substance) of the Indian Penal Code. The police have launched an inquiry into the incident.
Issaq had worked as a bonded labourer before becoming an Under Ground Drainage cleaner. The library was set up by him to encourage people to read. The library was located inside a shed-like structure. About 100 to 150 people visited it on a daily basis.
For the maintenance of the library, he spent over Rs 6,000. Additionally, he also brought more than 17 newspapers in different languages, including Hindi, English, Urdu and Kannada.
About 85% of the books were in Kannada. “The library had over 3,000 exquisite collections of Bhagvad Gita, over 1,000 copies of Quran and Bible besides thousands of books on various genres, which I sourced from donors,” Issaq told The New Indian Express.
Issaq said he will rebuild the library once again. “I was deprived of education and I want to ensure that others should not face my plight,” he added. “I want people to learn, read and speak Kannada and will rebuild it again.”