LIS Conferences in India – Pertinent questions or not?

June 2, 2017
Friends…comments requested…
‘Most’ LIS conferences organisers policy – FIRST – Pay Registration fee Accommodation charges (invariably limited on first come first served basis)
Then it will be informed if your paper which is under review – is selected for presentation or not!
Why would anyone want to pay few thousands without confirmation?
I will be incurring almost 10,000 for registration & accommodation and another 10-15000 for flight! Is it worth spending 20-25,000 approx for one conference?
The website does not even state who the speakers are…..
Why can’t organizers plan better?
Most organizers say that paper is being reviewed and will wait to inform participant… till just before conference!
Participants need to take necessary official permissions….. book ‘limited’ accommodation at conference venue & train/flight tickets in advance! Getting train tickets is difficult at short notice & flight gets expensive!
Is this the right way? Or do we have a better way?
Not trying to blame anyone particular …but my question is sure to ruffle few feathers…
Q1. Should advance Intimation of accepted paper for presentation should be made mandatory or not ….before necessary amounts are paid?
Q2. Are the LIS conferences held in India (national or international)  worth spending so much on? What are we learning? Are keynote presenters presenting innovative content? Are we getting to know Indian library examples providing innovative services or know more examples from foreign countries? Are the papers by participants new or again a rehash? Or are we just attending these conferences for API…or to meet, connect, network with people…… criticize/enjoy food ….check out tourist places?

Childrens Book Awards & Lists

June 1, 2017

Check out

Indian Children’s Book Publishers (Alphbetical)


For additions to this list please email me at

Letter to MY Precious Princess!

May 29, 2017

18 Jan 2017


Dear Mia,


There is so much to share with you when you are on the verge of becoming a young lady and leaving your teenage years behind…


I can see the flashback in my mind….as in movies!


The first time I saw you I thought “Ten pretty fingers & ten beautiful toes…. Filled with cuteness & topped with one button nose!


You were the most beautiful child on earth. Your crying was like music to my ears (sadistic eh!). Honestly I was working and missed you so much that any sound you made was like music. I spent hours just looking at you. Inspite of the poop & puke (grossed you out eh!) you still smelt like a garden of flowers (actually it was Johnsons soap, shampoo & powder). Don’t roll your eyes…. All said and done….You were a picture perfect baby…..My baby!


Suddenly I realised…. That my baby grew up and I was celebrating one year birthday of my princess with red balloons in heart shape & a huge cake with your grandparents, maasi and cousin sis…. with host of relatives in attendance. As time passed you slowly grew into a naughty little minx whose antics kept me thoroughly entertained and fully occupied. Don’t know when but you evolved into a monster – this scary monster – who got on my nerves – who questioned everyone and everything.  I was almost loosing hope as the monster was growing out-of-proportions; when I slowly started noticing teeny-tiny changes – a quiet metamorphosis into this responsible, confident, thoughtful, caring, lovely young lady who started ‘momming’ her own mommy. The only thing constant through all this ‘Sturm und Drang’ was your unflinching and unquestionable love.





And to tell you honestly – I was secretly ‘MOSTLY smiles inside’ with frown outside. Ive thoroughly enjoyed every minute of the roller-coaster ride.


Earlier, I may not have told you in so many words but always hoped that all my hugs conveyed to you my love and that you are the best thing that has happened to me in my life. I have always believed that love is not told in words but shown in deeds. But of late realised – that both are very… very… necessary. So I am writing to you. Although…Not very sure if writing letters is an obsolete sentiment in age of email, sms, chat & whatsapp! But when did I confirm to custom…so read on…..


I may not have been the best of moms or given you the life of a princess that you truly deserved. But I would like to tell you that you have been the best daughter in every way you possibly could be! Yes, even with your **** attitude and all. You are all of sugar and spice and all things nice! (Got it…Got it!!) I would not have liked you any other way.


I hoped to be the loving sweet mom whose brow is smooth and unlined while dealing with their children as shown in commercials….. but I think….. I came across as the ever stressed out mom, harried, pressed for time, rushing from one place to another, worried, tired most of the time, irritable MOM… who was busy with office and house work – and when free… was constantly lecturing you on one topic or the other. I hope that I have not taught you unconsciously that work comes over relationships. It does not!! Family is very important. Who would you turn to look and smile… when you have reached the pinnacle of success you have dreamed about? Its family!


Every person who comes into your life has come for a reason: Family you are born into or friends you cultivate in your lifetime. Should you want to keep it at stranger equation or relationship level or form a lifelong bond or chuck them out of your life is upto you.


I want you to know that every relationship needs a lot of time first for understanding to take place and later for bonding to occur. Love and Respect too are on same scale of importance but will come in time. Be it Daughter-Mother-GrandParents, Friend-Friend, Wife-Husband, between Daughter-in-Law and Parents-in-Law every relationship needs time with which comes understanding followed by respect….only then will love grow & flourish. Do not take any relationship for granted. Take out time from your busy schedule daily to meet-and-talk if in same place or call-and-talk if separated by distance. Yes Daily otherwise it will be postponed to later and then forgotten…. And then it is too late!!!


Even the Boss-Employee needs a lot of work and patience for the understanding and respect to grow. As respect cannot be demanded or bought…it has to be earned.


But patience and understanding does not mean that you become a doormat for anyone. You need to take a stand…. Make your own choices that are not based on fear or society accepted patterns or what you think others want from you.


Be your own person.


When to forgive and forget; or when to take a stand – take it headlong by horns – is what you need to decide. Because to win a war is to loose a friend. Is it worth it? You decide. Sometimes you win battles but loose wars! Can you afford to loose the main war? Think. So…sometimes to win wars – it is ok to loose couple of battles.


Choose your battles and wars wisely.

There will always be battles of mind and of the heart. Both give equal valid reasoning – don’t trust either – always listen to your inner voice – which will give you a right feeling and guide you in all your tough decisions of mind and heart. And whatever be your decision leading to right or wrong results, stand by it. Yes, there will be times you have taken right decision and sometimes wrong. Be bold to own it up – celebrate it if right and correct it if wrong. Nothing wrong in accepting that you were wrong. Remember you are human.


Just remember never do half hearted or half baked things. Give your 101% to everything you do and if it does not work out…nothing wrong in leaving it behind for your peace of mind. You will have the satisfaction of already having tried. Moving on is life.


Life is short – Make it sweet & enjoy it – Don’t make it tough for yourself by overthinking or for others by crying or whining over it. Nobody likes complainers & whiners!


There is always duality in nature…good with bad…ying with yang…black with white! So good phase is always followed by bad…. And bad with good! Cycle of life! So always have money, family and friends close by (not necessarily in same order!)


Who ever said money does not buy happiness had way too much of it! I believe it is not end all but most necessary for buying stuff you like and keeping good health which is happiness again! Can you get a good doctor to treat you without money?


I had struggled to make ends meet not once but twice in my life believing life will stop or get tired of handing me lemons. Life did not stop! Nor did I…. Stop making lemonade ie. I have realised….Money is important….very important infact…to make that lemonade much more sweeter!


Life is too short. Don’t spend time on earning so much there is no time left to spend – what you have earned! As long as there is a home to come back to… you can spend the rest on eating, travelling, meeting new people and gaining wonderful experiences…instead of creating movable and immovable property!


My advice to you is 60-30-10% rule – where 60% spent on yourself/family, 30% save for future and 10% spend on others….yes spending on strangers (orphans and old people) will make you appreciate all that you have & not take it for granted and give you lot of happiness of being useful to others.


Talking of money…there were times I could ill afford to spend money on trips & vacations which you graciously understood and accepted and there were times I spent a fortune when I could not afford it but just seeing your eyes light up & your wide beaming smile when you received what your heart desired made up for my empty pocket & worried mind. Hoping that all my struggles may have wizened you up! Hoping you will remember & appreciate the time I spent with you rather than remember the money I could not!


I want to give loads of other advices and clichés and save you from all negative things in life but have realised that you need to make your own experiences.


Always remember whenever you look back, you will always find me standing behind you – supporting you. (Scary eh if Im dead! LOLZ)


On a serious note, I fully trust you and know that you will be successful in every sense! Fly as high as you can….soar over the clouds… reach the stars….


Today ….I promise you….and myself….

I hope…I will always be the wind beneath your wings not the iron chain around your ankles.


I just want you to know that… I believe that…. I too have grown into a better person because of you. I appreciate my parents more now than ever ….because of you! I also want to tell you how much I appreciate you as a daughter and as a human being…..


Hoping you will have a memorable 18th Birthday. Don’t let reality ruin your life…dream on with eyes open 🙂


Now go and conquer the world!


Yours Loving Mom




Indian Children’s Book Publishers (Alphbetical)

April 17, 2017
  1. Amar Chitra Katha
  2. Diamond Toons
  3. Duckbill
  4. Eklavya
  5. Junior Diamond
  6. Kalpavriksh
  7. Karadi Tales
  8. Katha
  9. Little Latitude
  10. Pickle Yolk
  11. Pratham
  12. Red Turtle
  13. Seagull
  14. Tara Books
  15. Tiger
  16. Tulika Publishers
  17. Young Zubaan


To know more about me you can check out
Indian Children’s Book Publishers (Alphbetical) by Dr Achala Munigal is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.
Choose your CC license at

#Unpaywall (A New #OpenAccess #DiscoveryTool)

March 29, 2017



Some of you may remember oaDOI, a tool that searches for an Open Access (OA) version of an article when provided with a digital object identifier (DOI). Impactstory, the team behind oaDOI, has just announced the upcoming release of a new tool based on the oaDOI API called Unpaywall and it looks to be very useful indeed.

Unpaywall operates on the same principle as oaDOI: it hooks onto an article’s DOI and searches a number of sources for an OA version of that article. The main difference here is that, while oaDOI requires you to enter a DOI into a search box, Unpaywall is a Google Chrome extension and performs that search in the background automatically when you visit the landing page for an article. An unobtrusive tab will pop up on the page, as can be seen in the example to the right, which will be green…

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Unacceptable Hyderabad Branding by Beall: From City of Pearls to Corrupt City of Predatory Publishers Based on One! #Protest

November 23, 2016

Early morning woke up to tweet from @Jeffrey_Beall – Hyderabad, India — City of Corruption [Blog post] via @jeffrey_beall #Hyderabad #OA


Could not react till now – with other pressing work that needed to be handled on priority!

So read on…..

Beall blogs “home to countless predatory open-access publishers and conference organizers, and new, open-access publishing companies and brands are being created there every day” but only mentioned one – OMICS!

One sample is assumed as universal population by him? Why?

Kindly list ‘few’ from the countless OA publishers that you are aware from Hyderabad! Then probably you can justify branding Hyderabad corrupt! Based on one predatory OA publisher you have taken a fancy to ….you have branded whole of Hyderabad city as corrupt – most unacceptable!

All Hyderabadis and Indians protest! And we protest strongly! Request all Hyderabadis/Indians to register your protest by tweeting and sharing on various social media of the wrongful blame.

Beall – FYI only….

Hyderabad is called ‘City of Pearls’ most famous amongst the tourists and now an IT destination of the world. It has gained prominence as an outsourcing hub; where every known company/bank of repute has an office.

Are you assuming that you are better than all those CEOs and CFOs put together – who did not know any better than to have offices in Hyderabad?

All said and done – tacit rule of thumb of all business – anywhere in the world is  to use Internet to generate money! So why should Hyderabadis be any different?

If one person uses wrong business methods – you blame the whole city! Hyderabad is not a publishing hub!

Hyderabad – the city of Nawabs is celebrated for many things including but not limited to those I have listed. Golkonda mines is said to have produced the worlds famous diamonds like Koh-i-Noor that currently graces the Queens crown, the Hope Diamond  and many more. Hyderabadi food is to die for – such as the world famous biryani (a flavoured rice with meat) and Haleem (pounded wheat dish cooked for 12 hours aproximately with ghee and spices). The architectural marvel whose four minarets are visible from all four sides is called Charminar is located in Hyderabad. You name it and Hyderabad has it! It is home to Osmania University the 7th oldest University in India. Hyderabad has strived to educate the rural/urban masses who are now running most of the worlds top institutions. Satya Nadella, CEO OF Microsoft Corporation & Shantanu Narayen, CEO and President of Adobe Systems were educated here! Sushmita Sen Miss Universe 1994, Diana Hayden Miss World 1997, Dia Mirza Miss Asia-Pacific 2000 have all put Hyderabad on the map. Not to be left behind is Rohit Khandelwal who won Mister World 2016! P. V. Sindhu, won a Silver medal at 2016 Rio Olympics in badminton; Saina Nehwal another badminton great; as well as Sania Mirza in tennis have brought fame to Hyderabad by excelling in sports. With such wonderful contributions of beauty, brains, intellect, strength of Hyderabadis, its unacceptable that Hyderabad is branded as corrupt city by you – because of one OMICS!

I take exception to you calling the whole Hyderabad as city of corruption! It is not! Because of few bad apples (in this case one!) you cannot term the whole city corrupt!

Few facts on India and Indians – 34% employees at Microsoft, 28% at IBM, 17% at Intel and 13% at Xerox are Indians (Sure that many are from Hyderabad although statistics not available!)

I partially support Jeffery Beall and respect all the hardwork that goes into listing predatory OA journals and publishers. Also believe that all OA journal publishers and editors need to follow correct publishing practices. But do not support him nor will accept when he wrongfully blames whole of Hyderabad as it is home of OMICS which is termed predatory by him.

It is a sad day for all Hyderabadis who are hardworking, talented and highly educated – winning laurels all over the world being termed corrupt and predatory.

I am not trying to justify the wrong but protest against collective blame on basis of one!

One needs to consider the factors that lead to it.  Predatory publishing happened when Internet arrived on the scene and online publishing became easy. Since this predatory phenomenon occurred most recently all the professors, supervisors and researchers are not aware of it. Few senior professors on verge of retiring have not updated themselves regarding this particular predatory facet. But to counter it is the dynamic lot of professionals especially the librarians in India who are simultaneously updating themselves as well as working towards creating awareness by conducting sessions on local, national, international scale in addressing various LIS issues including predatorism. Yes, Hyderabad is a sample of India in some respects as given. India (Hyderabad) still resides in its villages and is only limited by the facilities not by enthusiasm to learn and contribute towards research. Most of Hyderabad like India is plagued by sporadic electricity failures and internet connectivity. The faculty or researchers in Hyderabad/India do not have most facilities that ‘global citizens’ take for granted. But they are still doing research and publishing papers that is highly commendable. Funding is a huge limitation everywhere irrespective or urban or rural. With budgets being cut; only the priority work is done first which forces training into backseat – mostly to be forgotten.  Most of the Central and State government run university faculty are overworked – as no new recruitment have taken place – to share the teaching and administrative burdens leaving them no time to update themselves or their fellow professionals regarding predatorism or any other issue. UGC is doing wonderful work in various HRDCs and streamlining but India is a vast country plagued with many problems. Even with most limitations in place the people at all levels and professions are doing wonderful work for the betterment of the nation! It is easy to blame and label but it takes time for standardizing. And Hyderabadis/Indians never shied away from challenges or responsibilities!

Predatorism is rampant all over the world not only in Hyderabad, India! So why was Hyderabad targeted and branded as corrupt? Because of OMICS? One if forced to think that probably biases are in play here. Please note: I do not support OMICS or any other publisher/journal which follows wrong publishing practices.

With ‘few’ dubious people trying to make a quick buck via the internet using unsavory unacceptable publishing process end up smearing good efforts of ‘many’ with their shady contributions.

Instead of taking exception – Hyderabadis need to take Bealls accusations into perspective and address it before this unsavory labeling sticks! Hyderabadis need to take a proactive stance and follow correct publishing process to rid of predatory label:


  • Every person who wishes to publish needs to read up correct publishing practices and follow them.
  • Google, ask on various professional groups if in doubt, attend seminars/conferences/workshops to update on correct publishing practices.
  • Librarians need to conduct awareness sessions
  • Universities need to have an open access policy in place
  • Professors who are supervisors should insist their research scholars publish in reliable OA journals and steer clear of predatory ones.
  • Departments/professional associations should have list of acceptable publishing vehicles and banning corrupt predatory journal publishers.
  • Researchers/Authors to check DOAJ for selecting OA publishing vehicles.
  • Editors/Publishers should have a transparent guidelines and policies that are published prominently on their website.
  • Editorial Members should ensure that they are not on board for name and fame; but ensure to check if journal they are associated with is following correct OA policies & publishing policies including following peer review processes .
  • Editors/Publishers should all come together voluntarily and agree on acceptable publishing processes that are in line with international publication guidelines like COPE
  • should take up the responsibility of getting all the editors and publishers in India together and establishing OA publishing guidelines & policy and publishing a standardized OA policy that is on par with international code. They can also conduct training and seminars that create awareness of correct publishing methods.

Those who want to know list of predatory publishers and journals can visit Bealls blog at or check out his tweets at Another interesting site I came across says – Critical Analysis of Jeffrey Beall’s Blog at is actually Beall bashing and branding him corrupt! Now seeing both these opinions causes confusion to the layman and unseasoned researcher or budding author! Can we blame them?

But a cautionary advice: It is always prudent to be careful and follow correct publishing practices instead of getting influenced by peoples opinion and branding which ‘may be’ or ‘may not be’ correct! Use your own discretion in filtering what is written.

Am I a Beall fan? I was. Not anymore. As he accuses all OA without basis and with bias. But I agree with him that proper accepted standardized publishing practices have to be adopted!

Open invitation to Jefferey Beall: Visit Hyderabad to see for yourself how Hyderabad city is and Hyderabadis actually are before making assumptions and accusing/labeling them wrongly.

#ProudHyderabadi #HyderabadSupportsOA

How to be updated on various happenings around you?

September 27, 2016

There are various ways one can update oneself

*Reading Print and Electronic Media

*Surfing the Net

*Social Media exchange

*Apps on Mobile

*Attending Talks of Eminent Persons


There are various ways one can attend these talks which are promoted and extended by numerous organisations as listed below

Manthan Samvaad
Manthan started in 2005 as apolitical and non-partisan, a voluntary initiative providing a forum to promoted public discourse that is vibrant, meaningful and intelligent aiming to engage citizens from all walks of life.

PechaKucha/Pecha Kucha

Peecha Kucha in Japanese means chit-chat. It is a presentation style in which 20 slides are shown for 20 seconds each. It was devised in February 2003 by Astrid Klein and Mark Dytham.


TED (Technology, Entertainment, Design)
It is platform where eminent people are speakers where they present their ideas on wide range of topics
in innovative and engaging way often through story telling. Founded by Richard Saul Wurman and Harry Marks
in 1984.


Toastmasters International helps in public speaking and leadership development with more than 332,000
memberships from 135 countries.It was founded by Ralph C. Smedley on October 1924.

Open Access in Hindi Language

September 6, 2016

मुक्त अभिगम (Mukth Abhigam) means Open Access in Hindi Language

Important Dates for LIS Professionals….

August 9, 2016

AchalaMunigal's Blog

  • Shiyali Ramamrita Ranganathan (12 August 1892 – 27 September 1972) is known as Father of Indian Library Science. His actual birthday is 9th August but official records state 12th August. So 12 August is celebrated as National Librarians Day due to official recorded information.  But library professionals celebrate on any of the following days from 9-12 August depending on convenience.

  • Iyyanki Venkata Ramanayya (24 July 1890 – 1979) is known as Granthalaya Pitamaha. He was the Architect of Public Library Movement in India. 14-20 November is celebrated as National Library Week.

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Homage to S. R. Ranganathan a Great Seer on 124th Birth Anniversary (1892-2016): Remembering his contributions!

August 9, 2016



Source of Image:



Dr Achala Munigal

Asst. Prof. (LIS)/Asst. Librarian

NERTU, Osmania University,

Hyderabad, Telangana State



Homage to the great seer of Library and Information Sciences – Padmashri Shiyali Ramamrita Ranganathan (12 August 1892 – 27 September 1972) who is the doyen of library movement in India and popularly known as Father of Indian Library Science for his immense unparalleled contributions to field.   Library professionals celebrate SRR birth anniversary on any of the days falling between 9-12 August every year. Various events, meetings, Seminars, Conferences, Workshops, Symposia etc. are held to commemorate this day and remember his contributions to librarianship.



Shiyali Ramamrita Ranganathan (SRR) was first child of father N. Ramamrita Ayyar and mother Seethalakshmi Ammal; born on 9th August 1892 in a small town called Shiyali (currently known as Sirkazhi) in Tanjavoor (currently Nagapattinam) district of erstwhile Madras Presidency (currently Tamil Nadu) in Southern India. But the official records display his birthdate as 12th August – on basis of which National Librarians Day is celebrated every year.


SRR’s ‘Aksharabyasam’ – a ceremony held by Hindu families as first step in education was conducted in 1897. He attended the Sabhanayaka Mudaliar’s Hindu High School at Shiyali and passed Matriculation examination in 1908/09 after which he joined Madras Christian College for intermediate 1909-10. He completed B.A. in year 1913 and M.A. in Mathematics in 1916. After education, he wanted to be a teacher in mathematics so took teaching technique course from 1916-17 in Professional Education, Teachers’ College, Saidapet, Madras and later L.T. degree in year 1917.



After education was completed SRR was appointed to the Subordinate Education Service in 1917 and worked as Assistant Lecturer in the Government College in Mangalore and later at Coimbatore till where he taught Physics and Mathematics. In 1921, he joined the Presidency College, Madras as Assistant Professor of Mathematics where he taught Algebra, Trigonometry and Statistics. He enjoyed teaching and was a popular teacher undertaking a lot of activities during his time.


In 1923 a position of librarian was created in Madras University and applications were called for the post. One of SRR’s friend persuaded him to apply for it which SRR did so, albeit a little reluctantly. There were 900 applicants but unfortunately for SRR none met the research requirements of committee other than him. In January 1924 he was appointed as the first librarian of Madras University. He was reluctant to take on an administrative position as he loved teaching and within a week was back pleading Principal for his old teaching job. But the Principal pacified him by promising to take him back if he felt the same way after his return from England as recounted in “A librarian looks back” published in ‘Herald of Library Science’ in 1963.


He had a strong work ethic and never let his disinterest come in way of work. He left for England in 1924 for 9 months on study-cum-observation tour where he met and trained as apprentice with W.C. Berwick Sayers, Chief Librarian of Croydon Public Library and completed Honors Certificate in School of Librarianship, University College of London. During his time in London he came across a toy erector set Meccano at Selfridges departmental store in London which inspired him to draft the Colon Classification where various elements could be combined to meet specific needs which he applied in giving classification number using PMEST combination. On the tour he visited over a hundred libraries which made a lasting impression on his mind and changed his outlook toward libraries and from then on he was like a man on a mission. He returned back to India with renewed interest and reorganised the university library. He took upon himself to educate people about benefits of reading and slowly evolved the library as hub of activity. He provided many services to attract users to library by adopting a holistic approach.


SRR donned many hats – that of a mathematics teacher, librarian, library science faculty, author, editor and above all a crusader who worked tirelessly for development of libraries in India as he believed it to be essential in development of the nation. Due to his efforts the library movement in South India is said to have strong roots reflecting on spread of public library network. SRR drafted a comprehensive visionary 30 year plan for the development of library system for India in 1946. Because of SSR’s interest and dedication Madras became the first state in India to enact the Madras Public Library Act in 1957.


SRR started out working as a librarian in Madras University Library between years 1924-44. In 1945 he sought voluntary retirement. But retirement was not for SRR, he was invited by the then Vice-Chancellor of Banaras Hindu University (BHU) Sir S. Radhakrishnan to develop a library system; where he worked as a Librarian and Professor of Library Science from 1945-47.  SRR received yet another invite from Vice-Chancellor of University of Delhi for teaching there from 1947-55.


He was honoured with D. Litt. (Honoris causa), Delhi University in 1948 and D. Litt. (Honoris causa) from University of Pittsburgh, USA in 1964.



SRR served in various capacities and contributed to corpus of knowledge on the National and international level.


SRR had extensive experience in developing libraries, hence was invited as an expert/consultant by many universities to suggest library development plan like University of Delhi in 1942, Nagpur University and University of Allahabad in 1946, University of Bombay in 1948, University of Mysore in 1956 and Bangalore University in 1966.


SRR worked tirelessly to promote and professionalise the library education in India. He felt the need for formal education in LIS and initiated setting up of various schools. In 1929 started the School of Librarianship of the Madras Library Association and the School of Library Science at the University of Madras in 1931. Diploma Course in Library Science in Banaras in 1945, Bachelor in Library Science in Delhi 1947 and Masters in Library Science in Delhi 1950


SRR was on various committees and played a key role in its founding and development. He founded Indian National Scientific Documentation Centre (INSDOC) in Delhi in 1950 and Documentation Research and Training Centre (DRTC), Bangalore under the auspices of the Indian Statistical Institute in 1962. He relocated to Bangalore in 1957.


SRR served as visiting/honorary lecturer/professor at various national and international universities. He contributed as visiting professor in 1948 at UNESCO International School for Public Librarianship, Manchester; in 1956 for library school(s) in United Kingdom; 1957-59 in Vikram University, Ujjain; 1958 for library school(s) in United States of America, Canada and Japan; and 1963 for library schools(s) University of Pittsburgh. He worked in DRTC as Honorary Professor till 1972.


SRR undertook many library tours in India and abroad including United Kingdom in 1925; Kerala and South Kanara in 1945; Western Europe, United Kingdom, and United States of America in 1948; Western Europe and United States of America in 1950; Ceylon 1952; United Yugoslavia and West Germany in 1956; East Germany Kingdom in 1955; United States of America, Canada, and Japan in 1957; United States of America, Poland, and Russia in 1959; France, East Germany, and West Germany in 1961; as well as Western Europe and United States of America.


Not only nationally but he made an impact internationally too with his contributions. His reputation extended beyond the borders of his country. Eugene Garfield, founder of the Institute for Scientific Information, wrote that SRR is “without question, one of the luminaries of library science” and has had a “revolutionary impact on international classification theory.” He made a lot of international connections like Donker-Duyvis, who was the then Secretary-General of International Federation for Documentation (FID).


SRR became Rapporteur-general, FID/CA (Committee on General Theory of Classification of the International Federation for Documentation) from 1951-61 and Honorary Chairman, FID/CR (Committee on Classification Research of the  International Federation for Documentation) in year 1963 and honorary president of the Second International Conference on Classification Research, held in Elsinore, Denmark in 1964. K. G. B. Bakewell called him “one of the immortals of library science.


He was tireless in his efforts and was often accused of being a workaholic or ‘Karmayogi’. It is said that he consistently worked 13-hour days, seven days a week, without taking a vacation for the entire time he worked in Madras University. Another most shared fact that reflects his dedication was that he returned to work the afternoon he got married after the ceremony. His was a lifetime of selfless commitment towards betterment of the discipline he grew fond of. Like a yogi he concentrated his whole body, spirit and mind in discipline of library and information sciences and worked towards its development.


He was a prolific writer with over 1200 research papers, 53 books and was editor for 5 periodical publications; associate editor of 1; and editorial board of 2 journals and editor of 2 books in his lifetime.


The most famous books listing include

  1. Five Laws of Library Science (1931)
  2. Colon Classification (1933)
  3. Classified Catalogue Code (1934)
  4. Library Administration (1935)
  5. Prolegomena to Library Classification (1937)
  6. Theory of the Library Catalogue (1938)
  7. Elements of Library Classification (1945)
  8. Classification and International Documentation (1948)
  9. Classification and Communication (1951)


He was the editor of two books ‘Documentation and its facets’ in 1963 and ‘Social science research and libraries’ in 1960.
He was an Editor of following journals including ‘Abigila’, Indian Library Association 1949-53; ‘Annals of Library Science’ from 1954-63; and ‘Library Science with a Slant to Documentation’ 1964-72. Associate Editor of ‘Libri’ in year 1951. He was on editorial board of ‘Modern Librarian’ 1937-47 and ‘Indian Librarian’ 1947. Conducted Memoirs, Madras Library Association 1939-1944 and American Documentation 1959


One of the most notable contributions to the field are five laws of library science proposed in 1931.

  1. Books are for use.
  2. Every reader his / her book.
  3. Every book its reader.
  4. Save the time of the reader.
  5. The library is a growing organism.


Although the above statements were self-evident; the librarians during that time did not get the full import of it due to the culture prevalent then of custodianship. But SRR laws help ensure the service orientedness of libraries. Full text of ‘Five Laws of Library Science’ is available at Hathi Trust Digital Library at$b99721 under Rights: Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives. 


Pauline Atherton, in reference to Five Laws of Library Science is quoted as saying, “these words stir students to think of and believe in library service above library work as their life goal.” (ALA, 1980)


Based on SRR’s Five laws various variants were proposed!

In 1998 Michael Gorman slightly tweaked SRR’s 5 laws and presented the changes in his book “Our Singular Strengths” at

  1. Libraries serve humanity.
  2. Respect all forms by which knowledge is communicated.
  3. Use technology intelligently to enhance service.
  4. Protect free access to knowledge.
  5. Honor the past and create the future.


In 2004 Alireza Noruzi applied SRRs laws to the web and presented it the paper “Application of Ranganathan’s Laws to the Web” at

  1. Web resources are for use.
  2. Every user has his or her web resource.
  3. Every web resource its user.
  4. Save the time of the user.
  5. The Web is a growing organism


In 2008 Carol Simpson applied the five laws to the media rich resources increasingly being procured in libraries and posted it on her website at

  1. Media are for use.
  2. Every patron his information.
  3. Every medium its user.
  4. Save the time of the patron.
  5. The library is a growing organism


In 2015 B Shadrach had addressed library professionals on the 123rd birth anniversary of SRR and presented his SRRs five laws rewritten so that its applicable to all people, societies, states and governments in this digital era.

  1. Knowledge is for use in ‘all’ forms
  2. Every citizen has the right to access ‘all’ knowledge
  3. Every piece of knowledge is for access by ‘all’ without discrimination of any kind
  4. Save the time of the ‘all’ knowledge seekers
  5. A library is one that evolves with time to achieve all of the above laws


I would like to present my take on SRR’s five laws in 2016 on my blog at . Applying the five laws to use of social media in libraries by librarians!

  1. Social Media is for use – increasingly in libraries by librarians
  2. Every user his/her Social Tool
  3. Every Social Tool its user
  4. Save time of user by providing information he/she seeks using the social tool he/she is familiar with.
  5. Social Media is a growing organism. With various tools and apps being introduced every day. Libraries are not brick and stone anymore. They serve members and non-members alike in terms of non-traditional library services; irrespective of space and time.


There are various library professionals who remember SSR’s contribution by creating accounts on various social media like


Another important contribution of SSR is Colon Classification (CC) published in 1933 is the first faceted or analytico-synthetic library classification developed by SRR. The name CC comes from use of colon (:) to separate the facets Personality, Matter, Energy, Space, Time (PMEST). Colon Classification was designed from 1924 to 1928 and was first published in 1933 by the Madras Library Association.  6th edition was the last one to be published when he was alive and is considered most popular. SRR published a preview of the proposed 7th edition in 1969 but sadly passed away in 1972 before 7th edition was published. The work of revision of scheme was undertaken by SRR’s associates under Sarada Ranganathan Endowment for Library Science (SRELS) and revised 7th edition was brought out in 1987 but unfortunately it was not a complete edition as it had no index!


Many library professionals still support teaching CC for following reasons

  1. Because an Indian had introduced it to the world and we as librarians from India should be proud of it! We should ensure that CC is not lost in obscurity in sands of time!
  2. Jobs are available (National and International libraries following CC)
  3. Its application in the Internet era!


The following libraries had implemented CC as SRR had worked in these places – initially as University Librarian at Madras University 1924-44 followed by Banaras Hindu University where he worked as librarian and professor of Library Science 1945–47 and later again as Professor of Library Science in University of Delhi 1947–55 so had implemented CC in all those libraries.


There are almost 18 libraries in India following colon classification listed at


His personal life was also exemplary and an inspiration to all. SRR got married a second time in 1929 to Sarada who and was blessed with one son, Yogeswar, born in 1932. His wife Sarada was very supportive of his dedication to his profession. He recognised her support and contributions in his life in 1956 during centenary celebrations of the University where he donated his life’s savings of one lakh rupees and endowed a Chair under his wifes name as “Sarada Ranganathan Chair of Library Science’, University of Madras. Most of his salary as National Research Professor and the royalties on his books were also donated to the Chair. In 1961 ‘Sarada Ranganathan Endowment for Library Science’, incorporated with the Treasurer for Charitable Endowments in India.


Keeping in view his various wonderful contributions the Indian government bestowed on him the honorific title ‘Rao Sahib’ in 1935. He was also awarded ‘Padmashri’ in 1957 for his invaluable contributions to Library Science.  Government of India recognised him as ‘National Research Professor in Library Science’ in 1965 when there were only four other professors in India during that time. He is known as ‘Father of Indian Library Science’ for his immense unparalleled contributions to field.


Bouquets and Brickbats

  • SRR formed the Madras Library Association in 1928 and was its founder secretary.
  • In 1931, SRR envisioned India’s first bookmobile which was a two-wheeled cart to deliver library services to rural areas. S. V. Kankasabai Pillai, a Sub Engineer was inspired by SRR and designed a bullock cart to be used as a bookmobile containing books, maps, charts, and a gramophone with records and operated within 10 mile radius for close to 10 years. In 1962 SRR proposed using a ‘librachine’ which used a motor van instead of bullock cart; having a professional librarian and circulation librarian to access remote areas.



Source of image:


  • He founded ILA in 1933 and was its president till 1953 and enrolled himself as the first life member of ILA
  • Sir Maurice Gwyer, Vice-Chancellor of University of Delhi who described SRR as “A Prince among librarians
  • Honorary Fellow, Virginia Bibliographic Society in 1951.
  • Was Patron, Delhi Library Association 1954.
  • In 1956 was Honorary Member, Indian Association of Special Libraries and Information Centers
  • He was bestowed with 1957 Padmashree, Government of India
  • He was engaged in research and writing in Zürich from 1954-57
  • 1957 Honorary Vice-President, Library Association (London) and Honorary Fellow, International Federation for Documentation
  • 1962 Founder-Patron, Mysore Library Association, Bangalore
  • In honour of his 71st birthday, his colleagues dedicated a 2 volume Festschrift published by Asia Publishing House, Bombay. Volume 1: Kaula, P. N., Library Science Today, 1966 and Volume 2: Das Gupta, A. K., Essay in Personal Bibliography, 1967.
  • He was the Chairman of Documentation (Sectional) Committee of the Indian Standards Institution, New Delhi from 1947-66.
  • In 1967 got Honorary Fellow from Indian Standards Institution (ISI)
  • In 1970, he received the Margaret Mann Citation in Cataloging and Classification from the American Library Association (ALA).
  • In 1971 got Grand Knight of Peace from Mark Twain Society, USA
  • In 1976, FID established the Ranganathan award in his memory for outstanding contribution in the field of classification
  • The Philately division, Department of Post, Government of India, released a Postal Stamp in SRR honour at the Official Opening of IFLA General Conference on 30 August 1992.



Source of image:


Everything was not hunky dory all the time in SRRs life. It is said that SSR faced a lot of hardships and unfortunate events.

  • It is said that SRR was hindered few health issues and also by the handicap of stammering which he gradually overcame.
  • His father passed away when he was only 6 years old.
  • His wife Rukmini died in a freak accident in 1928 with whom he had got married when he was barely 15 years old in 1907.
  • He suffered persecution for many years at the hands of Madras university’s administration. SRR retired from his position early at age of 54 years due to conflicts arising with a new university vice-chancellor and submitted resignation
  • He had a brief bout with depression after leaving Madras University before taking up position at BHU.
  • It was embarrassing for SRR to realise after he became the President of ILA that President had no powers except preside over the general body meeting once in two years at EC meeting held in Patna in 1946 and soon an amendment to the constitution was made where functions of the President were clearly laid-down giving custodianship of full control over the affairs of the Association and adopted in 1949 at the Nagpur Conference.
  • In the final years of his life, SRR succumbed to ill health, and confined to bed leading to his death due to complications frombronchitis on 27 September 1972.


There is much to be learned from him. Even though he was from a small town and hindered with hardships he never let it reflect on work; but he went on to influence the world. The tyros and neophytes in our discipline have much to learn from his simple living and high thinking approach to life in general and library science in particular. He was passionate about his work and mentored and encouraged intelligent students in their endeavours. He created an atmosphere of learning similar to a Gurukula where new ideas were generated with discussions.


Librarians of today have vague awareness of this great personality. We only remember him every August when we pay floral tributes as a token of our respect. But we need to understand that Librarianship is at this stage only because of efforts of SRR and many more such luminaries of our profession. Before SRR, libraries were only repositories and librarians were untrained custodians. It was SRR who gave direction and propelled Indian librarianship into the twentieth century and his views on libraries and librarianship are significant and relevant even today .


There are numerous quotes listed at


The best way to pay homage to SRR is to take the torch forward by establishing benchmarking in librarianship and teaching methods; standardised policy and taking part in active decision making for libraries by lobbying in government, implementing Public Library Act for every State in India, publish good quality research books, start well-equipped libraries in schools and ensuring that the world does not forget Colon Classification by ensuring its survival through its use and updation of the colon classification system with a proper index!


Jesse Shera rightly said, “That one cannot properly judge the work of S. R. Ranganathan without referencing to the totality of librarianship is a tribute to the breadth and depth of his contribution to the profession.” (ALA, 1980)


Let us all remember Dr. S R Ranganathan who is the father of LIS profession in India today and everyday.








Granthalaya Saraswamu” started in year 1915 is the second oldest LIS journal published in India. It was published by Andhra Desa Library Association in Telugu – a regional language of one of South Indian States undivided Andhra Pradesh (now split into Andhra Pradesh and Telangana State) by editor Sri Iyyanki Venkata Ramanaiah and  is still being published by editor Dr. Raavi Sarada under Andhra Pradesh Library Association (APLA) from Vijaywada, Andhra Pradesh. It was later renamed “Andhra Granthalayam” between years 1939 to 1941 and revived as  “Granthalaya Saraswamu”  in year 1948. ISSN 0972-8104. More Details available at

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