A workshop titled ‘National Policy Workshop on the Development of the Public Libraries’ was organized by the British Council’s Libraries Unlimited Programme and the Department of Public Libraries on Sunday at Bangabandhu International Conference Centre in the city.
The objective of this workshop was to learn comprehensive opinion and recommendation from the relevant stakeholders for the development of a national policy for the public libraries of Bangladesh.
State Minister for Cultural Affairs KM Khalid was present as the chief guest. AJM Abdullahel Baki, Director of Department of Public Libraries and Joint Secretary of Ministry of Cultural Affairs; Andrew Newton, Deputy Director of British Council; and Kirsty Crawford, Programme Director of British Council’s Libraries Unlimited Programme, were present as the guests of honour. Ashish Kumar Sarker, Director General of Department of Public Libraries and Additional Secretary of the Ministry of Cultural Affairs, presided over the event. Among others, members of Libraries Unlimited team and the Department of Public Libraries were also present.
In his speech, KM Khalid MP stated, to accelerate the development of the public library sector and to ensure modern, demand based and effective library services, formulation of a strong and comprehensive public library policy is in utmost need. "You have to follow-up with me for enforcing it, as I am the part of the government" he added.
Stating the special role of the public libraries towards facing the challenges of 21st century to meet the national and international development priorities, A J M Abudullahel Baki said, formulation of a new policy for the public libraries will assist the sector to perform its desired roles.
Andrew Newton stated; the British Council is supporting the Government to develop a national library policy.
Kirsty Crawford stated, “The British Council’s Libraries Unlimited Programme has been advocating for the development of a new policy for the library sector since 2017 and we wish to continue this work in order to support a draft National Policy for Public Libraries.”
In his speech as the Chair, Ashish Kumar Sarker mentioned, the British Council’s Libraries Unlimited Programme is supporting us through training and capacity building, policy, advocacy, expanding the scope for the uses of ICT in the library sector and developing the system of monitoring, evaluation and information management.