On February 5, 2024, Bangladesh will celebrate National Library Day, a festive occasion that brings the country together in a common appreciation for books and information. The theme for this year, "Reading Books in Libraries, Building a Smart Bangladesh," fits with the goal of making Bangladesh a country that is both smart and tech-savvy.
The first National Library Day was on February 5, 2017, when Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina made it a day to honour the role libraries play in shaping the intellectual climate of the country. The next year, in 2018, there was an official celebration. It happened at the same time as the famous laying of the foundation stone for the first Central Public Library in Dhaka on February 5, 1954.
The theme for this year shows how important libraries are for making society smart and well-informed. The title "Reading Books in Libraries, Building a Smart Bangladesh" sums up the idea that reading books in libraries isn't just something you do on your own, but a group effort to make the country smarter and more informed. Since the beginning, libraries have been safe places for our shared history and information. By encouraging people to discover the depths of library materials, the theme sparks a love of learning and a hunger for knowledge.
In line with the goal of making Bangladesh more technologically advanced, the theme emphasises how important it is for libraries to use digital tools and new technologies in this high-tech era. Libraries have a lot of information that helps people learn new things, see the world in new ways, and think critically about everything they come across.
Public libraries are very important for making society smarter and more informed because they inspire people to love reading and want to learn more.
The establishment of a "Smart Bangladesh" also significantly depends on libraries, which facilitate connections among individuals, foster innovation and creativity, promote continuous learning, and bridge the digital divide.
To ensure that individuals of all ages and interests can benefit from the information age, they provide resources and programs catering to these demographics. Additionally, libraries contribute significantly to the community by fostering cooperation and promoting mutual understanding among its patrons.
National Library Day 2024 is not merely a festive occasion; all individuals are encouraged to make smart Bangladesh a reality by contributing to this movement. We can collectively convert libraries from mere repositories of literature into thriving centres for innovation, ideas, and knowledge. In our never-ending search for information, let's work together in our libraries to make Bangladesh smarter.
Sabiha Tasmim, Masters' Student, Institute of Information Sciences Noakhali Science and Technology University