With the advent of technology, television, Internet, mobiles and e-books, the number of book lovers flocking the Abids Sunday book market has been dwindling.
Every Sunday morning, for the past seven years, Imran Khan gets bundles of books and starts laying them on the street in front of Surya Talkies in Abids.
Like him, for many of the booksellers here, coming to sell books on the dusty pavements of Abids every Sunday morning is a tradition passed on to generations in the same family. And it’s not just book lovers who await Sundays to be here to leaf through scores of publications, check for their favourite authors and engage in intense bargaining, sellers too wait for the day.
Almost every Sunday in the last four decades of Pasha has been spent segregating titles that are in demand and giving them prominent display and then spreading out the rest of his merchandise. “I keep waiting for Sunday all the time,” he says with a smile.
Back in those days, people used to buy all sorts of books and read them while travelling in trains and buses. But now, they come looking for particular books, Pasha says.
However, with the advent of technology, television, Internet, mobiles and e-books, the number of book lovers flocking the Abids Sunday book market has been dwindling. And the sales over the last few years have been dropping too.
“Gone are the good old days when we used to return home on Sundays with a good income,” rues a seller here adding, “our income has started to decline over the last few years”.
More sought after now here are children’s books such as colouring, alphabets and stories, says Mohammad Younus Khan. And the youngsters these days seem to be more fascinated with personality development books such as ‘You Can Win’, he says.
Apart from Indian authors such as Chetan Bhagat and Amish Tripathi, the other authors in demand are Dan Brown, Stephen King, John Grisham, and Agatha Christie.
A Manohar travels 12 km from Meerpet every week to visit this market and look around for books related to personality development and business. “I come here because I get them for cheap and also to find new releases on the same topic,” he says.
Chandrahas has been coming here from more than 20 years. He used to come here every Sunday with his brother when he was young. “I still visit the market and buy books here with my kids now,” he says. #KhabarLive