The first National Library Day will be observed today through various programmes in the city.
Directorate of Archives and Libraries and Department of Public Libraries, in association with Cultural Affairs Ministry, have chalked out an elaborate programme to observe the day.
The programmes include rallies, discussions and special exhibitions highlighting the importance of libraries.
On the eve of the day, President Abdul Hamid and Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina issued separate messages greeting all concerned and wishing success of the day's programmes.
In his message President Abdul Hamid termed the library as a mirror of civilization and said, "It has an intensive involvement with the chronological changes of education, taste and culture of human beings. So, library is a bridge between education and culture of the past and the present".
Realizing the importance of libraries in increasing knowledge, the foundation stone of the Central Public Library was laid on February 5, 1954, he added.
Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman established the Directorate of Archives and Libraries in 1972 to protect the thousands-year-old valuable elements of the history-heritage, literature and culture of the Bengali nation, the President said.
Subsequently, the services of the libraries are improving due to the government's relentless development endeavors, Abdul Hamid added.
He hoped that the observance of the day will motivate and inspire the people to use the libraries more.
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, in her message, termed the libraries as a treasure of information and said, "The role of libraries is immense in ensuring reading habit and enlightening the people through gathering knowledge, conducting researches, flourishing of spirit and values and practicing culture".
Referring to Bangabandhu's initiatives in establishing the Directorate of Archives and Libraries in 1972, the premier said the current Awami League (AL) government is implementing different projects to develop the libraries and expand up to the marginal level.
"We have taken a project to build Chittagong Muslim Institute Multipurpose Cultural Complex and are working to build digital archives," she said, adding that the design selection has already been completed to reconstruct the Department of Public Libraries at Shahbag in the city.
Approval has been given to modernize the Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Memorial Library at Tungipara in Gopalganj and online library management project to provide information technology based services at the government libraries, Sheikh Hasina said, adding that own building would be built at public libraries at each district across the country.
The premier also said the construction of six public libraries has already been completed and modern facilities are being increased at all libraries.
"Our government has been providing financial assistance and books free of cost to the non-government libraries," she added, reports BSS..