‘Only GITAM students who have completed engineering admission are buying books’

There are a number of people waiting for the first year engineering students to join college. These are not seniors waiting to rag them but the bookshop owners waiting for new customers.

Students from Srikakulam, Vizianagaram and Visakhapatnam make a beeline to the city for buying books and the old and used books sellers at Barracks are the first destination for most. The students of GITAM have completed their admission and only they are coming to buy, a shopkeeper said.

There are over 10,000 students joining engineering college in the three districts and not everyone is lucky to lay their hands on old textbooks. “Nearly 75 per cent of the students have to buy new books very few can get old books from friends or seniors or buy them from second-hand book shops,” S.K. Rehaman, proprietor of 786 Old & New Book Centre here, said. Most of the old books either get damaged or are lost, he explained.

“We normally order for the books in June itself, and this year it has been delayed by over a month,” he added. Every five or six years the textbooks change and they have to ensure that they are not stuck with old ones, including the used books that they buy back, he explained. For instance the syllabus for intermediate first year has changed drastically as the BIE has adopted the CBSE syllabus and all the textbooks have been changed. Next year the Intermediate second year textbooks would be changed, he said. The old textbooks are of no use now, they have to be scrapped.

Most of the new editions are released in June-July and so the bookshops wait for the new editions before ordering them, Krishna, proprietor of Sri Rajeshwari Book Links said. “We cannot assume that the books that were in demand last year will continue to be in demand this year. The faculty may change the list of textbooks. So we wait for the colleges to reopen and the order the books that are in the list,” he added.

Most of the textbooks are unchanged, Mr Rehaman said and explained that even if new edition is released the sale of earlier edition is not affected as the changes are few and the students can copy down the changes.

Interestingly, the textbook sales are more only in first and second year, by third year and fourth year most students appear to prefer the guides, Mr Krishna said.

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