'Library in tea shop': a noble and unique effort of Chinnathambi

Though Kerala tops the India's literacy chart but  Edamalakudi, where only one adivasi group
Muthavans are inhabitants, lies low in the list. Muthavans are among the most socially and economically excluded communities.

Chinnathambi’s little shop which sells tea, mixture, biscuits, matches along with other items, is situated at the hilly crossroads of Edamalakudi. The hand-written sign on plain paper pinned to the front, reads: *Akshara Arts & Sports/Library, Iruppukallakudi, Edamalakudi.*

Inside the same shop exists a library that stocks 160 books, available to the inhabitants of this remote hamlet. Chinnathambi maintains an immaculate record of every single book that's checked out along with who, when and where.

According to a report in People's Archive of Rural India, there may be only 25 families in this hamlet, but there were 37 books borrowed in a month. That’s close to a fourth of the total stock of 160.

The library has a one-time membership fee of Rs 25 and a monthly charge of Rs 2. There is no separate payment for the book you borrow.