The Indira Gandhi National Open University (IGNOU) made announcement on its official website to support the initiative of the Ministry of Culture under the National Mission of Libraries (NML) by creating a catalogue of libraries across the country which will not only include books but also artefacts and other resources from museums, libraries, archives, etc. For implementing this scheme, an open source platform Koha will be used, ensuring the access to be free of cost.
This initiative, benefitting students, scientists, researchers, artists, differently-abled persons, the common man, and new and non-literates, would require an expenditure of Rs 400 crore.
Vice Chancellor of IGNOU, Prof. Ravindra Kumar, during the inaugural session of a five-day workshop hosted by IGNOU in alliance with the Raja Rammohun Roy Library Foundation (RRRLF), Kolkata and the Ministry of Culture focused on the requirement of building professional libraries. In this five-day training workshop, the institute aimed to deliver hands-on training to participants on the open source application, Koha.
A professor at IGNOU, Uma Kanjilal revealed that the university would have to accumulate bibliographic records of the major libraries in India. It will further need to provide training and data migration from other library automation software.
National Mission of Libraries (NML) intends to create a National Virtual Library database on digital data about India and on all the other information generated in India.
IGNOU, along with CDAC and IIT-Bombay has taken the responsibility to develop the National Virtual Library of India (NVLI) under NML which will be storing all the information of the Indian cultural heritage.
Under this scheme, six libraries under the Ministry of Culture, thirty-five state central libraries and thirty-five district libraries as model libraries will be established, with major emphasis on the economically backward areas.