T�PURAM: On January 10, four days prior to a reply by ICCR for a query submitted by a library member under the Right to Information Act, ICCR programme director Padam Talwar in a letter instructed T K Subramoni, librarian of the British Library, Thiruvananthapuram, to �kindly bring it to the notice of all concerned in British Library, Thiruvananthapuram, that the library will close down on March 31, 2008.�
Krishnamohan of Mannanthala, a member, in November sought details under the RTI Act, including the �nature of entity, organisation, governing and management structure� of the library.
Other details sought were about the role of ICCR and details of the 1971 agreement between ICCR/Government of India and the British Council for managing British Libraries in India.
The ICCR is mum on most of the queries. The reply Krishnamohan got from the ICCR also says that the library is �not a public authority under the provisions of the RTI Act 2005, as it is not owned, controlled or substantially financed by the Government of India or through the funds provided by the Government of India to the ICCR.�
Also, the ICCR is silent on why the decision to close the library was taken by the British Council when the ICCR website states that the library comes under it. With most of his questions unanswered, Krishnamohan is now planning to file an appeal.
The High Court recently issued a notice to the British Council after another library member filed a petition against the hasty decision of the Council to close the library.
The recent government decision to take over the library had come as a good news for members who had kicked off a campaign to retain it in the capital.