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While there are several book stores in Mapusa, the ever crowded Suraj Book Stall remains a local landmark, serving people in Bardez and Pernem and other parts of the state since 1962

Of knowledge and more

Danuska Da Gama | NT BUZZ

Realising the demand for books and other stationary items, Chandrakant Jairam Pandit fondly known as ‘bhai’ started his enterprise Suraj Book Stall a year after Goa got liberated in 1962. Situated outside the market, on the main road that leads to the court, this is one place that is always crowded.

And Bhai says that he feels happy when people tell him that they’ve become professionals in various fields by reading or learning from books bought at his book stall. “It is satisfying to run a shop which has direct links to knowledge and education and which contributes to a person’s growth and future,” he says, while attending to customers, enquiring about people in the family of a customer, and tendering change.

Indeed, parents and students flock here for textbooks up to college level besides, other books like storybooks for children or books in vernacular languages. From pens and pencils to other items like charts and stickers that are used by children for projects and assignments, the stationary shop has it all.

“Even if books are available or out of stock, we have always tried to source it from the publishers and supply them to people. We are the most sought after for textbooks, and several people from South Goa come to us knowing that we will somehow get the books,” says Pandit.

Now 77, he remains ever active in the shop, assisted by one of his sons and daughter-in-law, Niraj and Tanvi Pandit. “The future generations should take forward the legacy of my book stall which has over the years helped foster relationships with so many people. Knowledge is God, and thus our family will inherit blessings and good wishes,” he says, emphasising that in such a business one cannot think of making money on books or earning lots of profit.

“Development of a person and a place is only possible through education which is most important,” he says, before ending that running a business for so long isn’t easy, especially when there are more competitors in the market.

The store is open from 9 a.m. to 9 a.m. on all days, and from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Sundays.

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