On 22nd June 2020, The Platform by CGSS, Islamabad organized a Webinar on the topic “RIP: Book Reading”. The session aimed to discuss the dying habit of Book Reading, the significance of libraries, and how to revive it. Furthermore, the webinar focused on highlighting the role of various stakeholders to promote the culture of book reading among the youth.
Brigadier Akhtar Nawaz Janjua (Retd), Member Advisory Board, CGSS presented the opening remarks and stressed upon the importance of book reading, especially for the students and the youth.
Dr.Muhammad Haroon Usmani, Chief Librarian, University of Punjab, Lahore mentioned the great Book Reading Club initiative taken by the Punjab University to promote book reading among the students. He further suggested various steps that can be taken by the educational institutes which can lead to the promotion of book reading habits among the youth.
Ms. Naila Ansari, a renowned playwriter mentioned the need of experimenting with stories to promote quality content. She further said that diversity in literature is one of the most crucial aspects that need to be focused on. Ms. Naila also appreciated The Platform for arranging this webinar.
Mr. Ghayur Hussain, Director-General, National Library of Pakistan shared his thoughts during The Platform’s webinar about the trend of the book reading the younger generation. He stated that we do have readers but the problem lies in the access to them and the selection of books to read.
Ms. Sidra Amin, Founder, Peshawar Book Club discussed her journey of initiating a Book club in Peshawar. She commented that instilling the love of books in our youth is extremely important. Ms. Sidra appreciated THE PLATFORM by CGSS’ initiative to start a discussion regarding books and reading, she discussed that reading is not a dying trend but the access to books and libraries needs to be improved.
Mr. Syed Ommer Amer, Founder and CEO Daastan shared his initiative of Daastan and the aim behind his project. He discussed that young writers need to be encouraged and promoted through platforms like Daastan to introduce them to the writing community of Pakistan. Writers in Pakistan have immense potential and they only require a suitable platform.
Mr. Haseeb Akbar, an avid reader, and Network Engineer shared his thoughts about the contemporary ideas of book reading. He also mentioned the Ebooks and E-Libraries should also be normalized for easy access to reading and books.
Approximately 35 people from different sectors of society attended the webinar.