When Second hand provides Means

The replacement for books is still not found – let it be novels, plays or stories. Books are the best way to beat boredom. With eBooks competing with traditional books, interestingly, second hand books are of no less value. Bharathi salai (popularly known as Pycrofts road) in Triplicane is the hub for second hand books. A short walk down the Pycrofts road in the evening can serve as a good meal for bookworms.


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Mr. Sathish, a third-generation book seller proudly says that it is their family trade. He further adds, “We get these books mainly from people who vacate their houses and from some old markets at 25% of the actual price of the books. We sell them at half rates or much less depending on the edition. We do see profit depending on the sales. Sometimes we earn upto Rs.1000 a day or end up with just Rs.200. Engineering books, general books, Chetan Bhagat books and comics are widely preferred by the people.”

On quizzing about the sales during rainy season, he says, “We won’t put up shops during rainy season and our business becomes very dull. Since we don’t have any other work to do, rainy days leave our pockets empty. But I am happy that even many famous writers, doctors, advocates and students opt for sellers like us inspite of computers and technology”.


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Meanwhile, Mrs. Ramalakshmi, who is a regular buyer at this place, says, “I come here with my daughter to purchase spiritual books and some reference books for her. As these books are available at a lower price, I don’t bargain much”.

Another book seller Mr.Moideen from Vandalur, who has been doing this business for nearly 14 years, says “I buy books in markets and I am quite choosy about collecting the books as they may get stagnated for weeks without being sold. Books like Rajeshkumar novels, pocket novels, general Tamil books and engineering books are the quick picks among most of the readers. People also reserve some books if they are not available. But business faces a downfall during IPL seasons due to the changing interest of the people. Even the usual days find slow movement of books with only 2 or 3 being sold earning only around Rs.50”. But atleast second hand books do get a platform to perform.

By Akshaya Ramani, an avid writer and a second year student of Electronics and Instrumentation Engineering.