Library on wheels: Kolkata’s tram in a new avatar 

If you catch this tram car running between Esplanade and College Street in Kolkata, why not hop on to partake in this 20th-century historical ride. We are talking about the tram in its new avatar here, the Library on wheels launched on September 24th. You can pick up a book to read while you ride around parts of the city at a nominal fare and get free wifi too.

What will you experience? Sitting in the comfort of an air-conditioned tram, pick out a novel or a book on competitive exams to read or maybe just a magazine or a newspaper. Books on offer include Harry Potter, books by Nobel Laureate Rabindranath Tagore, other Indian authors like Chetan Bhagat amongst others.

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The inaugural ride for passengers included the tram decorated with balloons and streamers, giving a feel of the glory of the days gone by, that still has some charm left as the tram still remains an integral part of Kolkata’s cultural heritage.

The library on wheels is an initiative by the West Bengal Transport Corporation. The tram passes through several schools and colleges, including College street which has the prestigious Calcutta University and Presidency College. The ticket fare is Rs.20 to walk in and enjoy a book and chill on a lazy day in the city of joy.

At a time when the digital medium is threatening paperback books and newspapers, this tram is a way of encouraging the habit of reading.

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