Bangalore: Vignesh and Vishwas regularly visit the Canara Book Bank after classes. Unable to afford the expensive textbooks that their engineering course demands, the bank is a second home for these youngsters. "The cost of books is very high. However, here, we just have to pay Rs 200 per year which is very minimal and anyone can pay to use it to the fullest," says Vignesh.
At the helm of affairs is 86-year-old Ramachandra Shenoy, a retired bank employee who wanted to share his love of books.
Set up in 1989, the bank lends out books at nominal rates to students who can't afford to buy them.
Shenoy says, "As a child I also faced difficulty and I know how it is to not be able to afford schools books. It motivated me to take up this job."
Shenoy also enjoys mentoring the students, suggesting material for their course work and throwing in some friendly advice when needed.
"They are very friendly here and often give you more books than we require. They also recommend books which are helpful for the future exams," Vishwas says.
"I have received a lot of favours from people and now the time has come for me to re-pay that and do my bit for society," Shenoy adds.
With just three volunteers for nearly 3,000 students, managing the book bank is a bit of a struggle on a daily basis. But Shenoy hopes that more people will take note of the good work being done and come forward to volunteer.
Ramachandra Shenoy, Canara Book Bank, Bangalore Ph: 080-26631114