Published: 16th November 2018
This librarian from Coimbatore works in three libraries and also teaches yoga. Here's why kids love him
Lakshmanasamy, who is currently working as a third-grade librarian in the Vagarayampalaym branch library near Karumathampatti, is a lot of fun and is passionate about getting kids to read more books
For a man who loves books and reading, working at a library is a dream come true. That's exactly the case with Coimbatore librarian S Lakshmanasamy, who recently received the Dr S R Ranganathan Best Librarian award given out by the Directorate of Public Libraries functioning under the School Education Department. He loves being a librarian so much that he works at no less than three libraries. Speaking to Edex, he said that he's been a librarian since 1997 and currently, in addition to serving at the Vagarayampalayam branch library, he is also working as a village librarian in Unjapalayam and Rayarpalayam and as a part-time librarian in Kaniyur.
One of the biggest reasons why he is so popular is because he is the antithesis of the librarian stereotype — someone who's starchy, stiff and wants everyone to be quiet, "You will notice that in every library, the librarian is considered to be a person who is strict, who asks you to speak softly or not speak at all while you are in the middle of a reading session at a library. I wanted to make people comfortable when they came to a library especially the children. So, I began to act like a child around these kids and started to interact with them and play sometimes when they came into the library. Gradually, they started coming in groups, reading more and more books that I suggested to them," he explains.
I had wanted to become a teacher. I always had a knack for reading books and suggesting them to other people so that I could share the information I gather. Then I started visiting our local library regularly and realised that I could read more and impart even more knowledge if I worked as a librarian
S Lakshmanasamy, Librarian
He received the award from the Minister for School Education KA Sengottaiyan in Chennai on November 14.
Lakshmanasamy, who is currently working as a third-grade librarian in the Vagarayampalaym branch library near Karumathampatti, a small district town in Coimbatore, has already strengthened the reader base in the library through his continuous efforts. "At the time of joining service, I was determined to increase the number of readers at the libraries and also wanted to create awareness about the benefits of reading books among children," he tells us. He adds that they have also conducted several essay writing competitions on various topics at the libraries for school students, which attracts them more to come regularly to these libraries.
In his 21 years of service, he's said to have enrolled 5,629 members, 182 patrons in the libraries. Besides this, he also enrolled two students from government schools per day in Somanur, Karumathampatti from April 2018. Apart from being a librarian, Lakshmanasamy also loves teaching yoga to the members and school students. He adds that he also collected donation from the public and furnished the libraries for about Rs 2 lakh.