House of knowledge

Bad libraries build collections, good libraries build services, great libraries build communities. – R. David Lankes

Today, we happened to visit the Indian Library of Thane, a one-of-a-kind initiative of Sanjeev Malhotra and his brothers Rajeev and Jitendra, makers of the unique indigenous shirt brand DEVAA. It was their parents' dream of building a House of knowledge for college and university students, especially those coming from the deprived sections of society - that was realized in the form of Indian Library, a spacious structure of six reading rooms and a conference room spanning 6000 square feet, open round the clock 365 days of the year. What's more, the library is equipped with a hygienic canteen offering snacks and beverages at subsidized rates. The Indian Library also furnishes the latest information on various courses conducted in India post SSC and HSC. Every quarter, there's a seminar on Vocational Guidance on different course and career avenues.

For long, we were on the lookout for a good library which accepts books across different knowledge spheres, but we had to suffer scores of dreadful interactions with pompous NGOs and charitable (read chair table) organizations (who seem to stand for everything but their stated objectives proudly proclaimed on their websites)

Smiling reception: Rakhi & Pratibha

Luckily, we stumbled upon the modest web site of Indian Library and a short and sweet telephonic inquiry made way for a pleasant, seamless experience. The lady at the reception was very polite and proactive, and honest about the submission that the library being short staffed, door step pick up of books was out of question. So, we drove down to the place with our rich repository of books and were immediately helped by the office boys in the unloading and transfer at their end.

Office peons Ajit Khan and Ashok More

Across the expanse of the reading rooms, you'll find worthy students of Arts, Commerce, Science, Government Services, Management Courses, Medical, CA, ICWA, CS, Engineering and Law engrossed in deep study. A nominal subscription fee entitles students to refer books across various fields under one roof, nearly arranged by titles and authors. They can also order a reference Book,if not readily available. A highly professional staff caters to their needs, as also attends to visitors who come for donating books, making inquiries or seeking admission. The positive energy of the place is contagiously inspiring. No wonder, it has found a place of pride in the Limca Book of Records.

This is one place you must visit at least once and if possible, do donate your used books. The American Library Association famously said "When you absolutely positively have to know, ask a librarian." We would like to humbly add "Ask the Indian Library of Thane"