CHRISTINE MACHADO | NT KURIOCITY
There’s nothing quite like the joy of delving into the world of books. But for youngsters especially, buying books can be a bit of a costly affair. The next option is a library. However not all libraries have a collection that is attractive or up to date. And these libraries may not necessarily be easily accessible to all; and this where The Booktique, a new online library venture started on social networking site Instagram by Elijah D’Souza and Emmanuel Souza comes in.
“We buy novels in bulk from online sites, catalogue them using software, and upload the list on Google drive. Once people contact us through Instagram, we send them a link to the books that we have. Once they choose a book they fill an online Google form with their contact details,” explains Elijah, a student of Don Bosco College of Agriculture, Quepem and a resident of Anjuna.
The books are then packaged using old newspaper and delivered to the address for free. “Being an endurance cyclist, I can cycle for very long distances to deliver and pick the books for free anywhere in North Goa,” says Elijah.
A weekly fee of Rs20 is charged. As security, a sum of Rs100 is taken at the time of delivery from which they deduct the weekly charges. “We deliver the books in less than a week. Emmanuel takes care of the deliveries when I can’t deliver them as he cycles as well,” says Elijah. At present they have approximately 600 novels to choose from across all genres mostly in English. There is no specific age group that they are targeting. “Our aim is to make reading cheaper and make access to it easier. We have received over 20 orders at the moment. We plan on increasing our book collection in the next few months,” says Elijah, adding that most of their orders have come from youngsters.