TODAY -

Modernizing Manipur Technical University Library: A perspective

Dr Arambam Birajit *

Library at Manipur University (MU) , Canchipur as seen on October 21 2014
Library at Manipur University (MU) , Canchipur in October 2014 :: Pix - Deepak Oinam



Manipur Technical University (MTU) was established in April 2016 i.e. two years back by an Ordinance of Government of Manipur. This is the only Technical University in the State but second after Assam in North East. All the technical institutions of the State are to be affiliated to this University.

MTU will serve as the new hub of the technical education where talents and opportunities come together for a better future of Manipur. Youths of Manipur will have the opportunity to take part the competition among the rest of the country.

The main vision and objective of this University is not only to produce Technologists, IT Managers but also capable of contributing towards the development of home grown technical innovative ideas in Manipur. Besides this, it will provide academic and logical support for industrialization in the State based on knowledge economy.

Achieving such a vision depends on the collective effort of all sections of the University and all concerned. Not only the teaching faculty but non teaching academic staff also has a tremendous role in accomplishing the goal of the academic institution. In this knowledge driven society, the library of the institution is also serving like a knowledge bank.

All the transactions of all sorts of knowledge, information and data will be carried out by using the resources of the library. Providing such ready services to the right users without wasting time will be achieved only when the quality library management in ICT environment is effectively maintained.

In library management, there are lot of activities to be done behind the screen i.e. acquisition, processing, organizing, retrieving, sharing and evaluating all the knowledge assets of the organization. We all know that the advancement of ICTs influences in every field of our day today life.

So, library is also one them that enhances quality service with accuracy, efficiency, time and manpower saving and so on. At the same time, with emerging technology, rate of information explosion is also repeatedly increasing. So, approaching towards the library automation is the need of the hour to cope with the demand of users in this information era.

Library automation is necessarily done in two components i.e. House keeping operation and Networking. House keeping activities includes all the routine operations such as acquisition, cataloguing, circulation and serial control.

Automation of these activities helps in managing the library resources in a better way with saving time, money and manpower for example once the bibliographic details like author, title, edition, publisher, price, ISBN number etc. are entered at the time of order, the same data can be used for accessioning, cataloguing (OPAC) and circulation.

Today, we all are aware of the advantages of automation. So, the details in this regard are not going to discuss in this article so as to save the valuable time of readers.

The next component of automation is Networking, a combination of technology and connectivity by which the geographical isolation or barrier of information destination can overcome. So, there will be no question of Manipur being geographically remote or isolated from mainland India or rest of the world.

Huge resources available in e- format in any connecting Nodal Networking or digital library can be shared by all the member libraries. Due to the advancement of technology, the rate of growth of information and knowledge is faster than before and ever increasing. Hence it has become impossible for each library to procure every document.

Besides this, most of the libraries are not self sufficient in terms of fund, space for expansion, number of staff. The ever increasing price of publications and emergence of new subjects are affecting collection development in the library.

In this regard, MTU Library being a new born and poor state owned institution should aim to link with suitable Digital Library and national level Networking associations or institutions like INFLIBNET, DELNET, NISSAT, INDEST etc. to promote and establish communication facilities for improving capability in information transfer and access that provide support to scholarship learning research and academic pursuit through cooperation and involvement of agencies concerned.

This will be a window to look other libraries and organisations of relevant field in India and abroad. Sometimes, financial support from these Networking institutions are getting in university libraries for procuring computer hardware and software for automation of the library or providing even special grant also.

Most of the Networking institutions offer the technical guidance to the member libraries on collecting, storing, sharing and disseminating information. Even they are giving staff training and installation expert also.

Now, we have six technical libraries in Manipur including MTU Library itself. They are Govt. Polytechnic, MIT, NIT, NEILIT and IIIT. Cooperating among the local libraries, a Networking system of digital library can be developed with a vision of creating home grown database information.

Apart from this idea, all the users of member libraries can be allowed to share the resources physically including inter-loan facility under certain guidelines. In a sense that MTU will not have much difficulty to act as Nodal Center for a Library Consortium/Network of all technical libraries located in the state as qualified computer faculty and library professionals in support of expert team of above mentioned national institutions.

On other hand, out of six, four libraries are under the central funding institutions. So, they will have no financial problem to some extent. All these programmes can be taken up step by step on priority basis for the financial convenience.

Now is the right time for MTU to take initiatives for fully automated library in order to provide efficient and effective service to the youths of this poor state, Manipur as starting from the beginning is the best policy.

To keep pace with the changing environment as well as National programme "Digital India" approaching towards a digital society, the contribution of MTU library for achieving the vision of the state and MTU itself in particular should not be lacking behind the national and global trends.

Even though, all these are not a mere task but a challenge for university authority and concerned library professional. Joint and strong determination of all concerned are very much needed to succeed a challenging task.


* Dr Arambam Birajit wrote this article for The Sangai Express
This article was webcasted on July 08, 2018.



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