IN this age of artificial intelligence (AI) and social media, one can barely find a book reader in society. People would read newspaper and good books in the past to relish their spare time, but today they find such joie de vivre in technology.

Books are referred to as man’s best friends. Those at peace with themselves anywhere in the world are not the ones who have massive mansions, luxury cars and lavish lifestyles, but the ones who develop the habit of reading, as books expand knowledge and wisdom, teach love and patience, give courage in difficult times, groom a personality, and are a lasting source of peace.

Living in Raiwind, a suburb of Lahore, I have to endure a number of hassles in seeking books written by local and international authors. There are scores of schools and colleges in Raiwind, but not a single library.

The government should make it mandatory for educational institutions across the country to regularly organise book-reading and essay-writing competitions in order to encourage and polish the skills of the young generation.

Moreover, both federal and provincial governments should work towards establishing public libraries in every city so that the people may not have to travel long distances to quench their thirst for knowledge and some book-reading fun.

Muhammad Ahmad Sajid
Raiwind

Published in Dawn, July 10th, 2024

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