Read the article “Library Associations Need to Do Better By the Members” by Kimberley Wilson at https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/library-associations-need-do-better-members-kimberley-wilson?trk=hp-feed-article-title-comment where she says “I think it’s time we as a profession use the power of the membership dues check and demand that the people who are supposed to be serving us start producing material that will actually help us”
Since I have already paid “Lifetime Memberships” in following library associations…What else can I do ………as I don’t have the power of “Membership Due” at my disposal!
- Indian Library Association, India (ILA) SL-5415
- Academy of Library Science and Documentation, Hyderabad, India (ALSD)
- Andhra Pradesh Library Association (APLA) 1354
- Indian Association of Special Libraries and Information Centres (IASLIC) 3757-L[Z1]
- Bombay Science Librarians Association (BOSLA)
- Management Libraries Network (MANLIBNET) MLN\L\372
- Society for Advancement of Library and Information Science (SALIS) http://autolib-india.net/salis/members.php
- Telangana Library Association (TSLA) LM13
I remembered an adventure I had undertaken after reading the above post which I would like to share….
I wanted to be the change I sought.
I thought that getting elected on one of the national bodies will give me a voice that can be used effectively to give representation to underrepresented south india LIS professionals, Women LIS professionals on a national platform. I am passionate about my profession and wanted to contribute. Surprisingly, ‘everyone’ dissuaded me and told me that “MOST” Library Association elections are rigged. It is already prior decided by few “Movers and Shakers” of the profession and elections are an ‘eye wash’. But I wanted to check out for myself instead of depending on others opinions and experiences. So I requested my teacher Prof. S Sudarshan Rao (Retd) DLIS, OU and the then Vice President South of ILA who was encouraged and nominated me and Prof V VishwaMohan current HoD DLIS, OU who was also my guide for PhD to second the proposal for nominating me as council member. I filed my papers via email to Prof K. G. Vaidya The Election Officer, ILA 2016-2019 KGVaidya1932@gmail.com at Fri, Dec 4, 2015 at 1:44 PM as given below and mailed my papers by speedpost by India Goverment postal system as the last date for submission was 15th December 2015. As all of you may have noted there was still ample time.
Please check the dates of various emails sent between me on 8 Dec 2015 and Prof Vaidya confirming receipt of hard copy of nomination received from him on 15 Dec 2015!
When I checked the website http://www.ilaindia.net/2015_Election/Valid%20Nominations_ila_election_2016-2019.pdf found Announcement of Final Valid Nominations – 31 December 2015!! Which I assume, if the final election result also…..My name was not included….
So I emailed Prof Vaidya who is election officer.
I also made a follow up call, he informed that my nomination form came in late hence was rejected! When I forwarded his (Prof Vaidya) confirmation email back to him – there was no response. During our conversation he adviced me to wait for couple of days and then connect with the Prof Shokeen as earlier President and Prof Husain as Current President for more details. But I thought that waiting couple of days would ‘dilute’ the issue so immediately written an email (noting their emails from their official website) – screen shot given below ….but no response from either Prof Shokeen or Prof Husain.
I want to point out that this is not a case of “sour grapes”! I wish all the best to the current ILA members.
And why am I raising my voice at such a late date?
Earlier I did not want to “cause any unnecessary ripples” by whistleblowing …..but of late realised that “ripples” are most necessary to bring about change! Because I think that “every drop makes an ocean”. Every protest made – will ignite a thought and encourage discussion and bring about change! Change I seek – Change you seek – Change we all seek!! I think that there may have been others like me, whose nominations were rejected on ‘filmsy’ causes and the rest of the members were ‘displayed’ as ‘elected unopposed”! Hoping that this post will generate lot of discussion on the transparency of various library associations, their elections, how they work, and their contributions to the profession!
Questions raised by me
“How transparent was the election 2016-2019 of Indian Library Association?” Can they give us statistics as to how many members voted and what was the voting process? I understand that my nomination to stand ‘may’ have been rejected! But why did I not get a letter stating the ‘reason’ for rejection? Can ILA provide me a copy if they did indeed send the letter on grounds I was rejected from their records? Also curious to know if “rejected nominees” don’t get to vote? How come I as a member did not get to vote? There was no email or post stating the process to members! How many members of ILA are there in Hyderabad, Telangana State? Almost all the people I know in Hyderabad, mentioned that they did not vote! So who voted?
Waiting for the Past President/Current President or any of the ‘unanimously’ elected council members to respond!
LIS professionals following my blog may wonder if I would like to contest again…Im like sure “Why not”? But after writing this blog, I am sure that what remaining ‘chance’ I had in contesting in ILA or any other library associations are put to ‘permanent rest’! As I am sure none of the LIS association would want such a vocal person who is able to speak her mind on board and question their mode of working!
But I am a positive person and still hoping to contribute to the profession in a meaningful way …so still exploring various available avenues ! Check out my facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/Dr.Achala.Munigal/ where I post all the lectures I have taken as resource person till date. I tweet to 374 followers on twitter at https://twitter.com/DrAchalaMunigal and 1024 followers on IBLibraries at https://twitter.com/IBLibraries. Do check out my LinkedIn profile at http://in.linkedin.com/in/DrAchalaMunigal and feel free to connect with me on it. I have recently completed CopyrightX online course from Harvard https://www2.harvardx.harvard.edu/certificates/copyrightx16spring/7b7f989afe/certificate.pdf. I have also done Copyright for Educators & Librarians https://www.coursera.org/account/accomplishments/verify/HL8AUQ2N82TU and Copyright for Multimedia https://www.coursera.org/account/accomplishments/certificate/LCDPDDDFSHST
Check back on my blog to know more of my professional adventures 🙂