Tribhuvan University Central Library
The in-numerous racks, shelves and thousands of books make the Tribhuvan University Central Library (TUCL) stand out as one of the largest resource centers in Nepal. The fact that the library houses a huge collection of books on almost any and every subject is really fascinating and once you enter inside the library, no doubt that you would feel lost and small surrounded by the large shelves and racks of the books. The books shelved here are of varied genres from comprehensive books on arts to culture to politics to economic, just name the genre and you will find the books here.
Established in 1959, TUCL is regarded as the best large, modern library in Nepal and the British Book Development Council also rated it as one of the best libraries in Asia in 1969. The library not only has the largest collection of books but also is large in terms of manpower and equipment. The two-floored library holds more than 300,000 books and has a total staff of 70 people, 12 professors, 3 administrators, assistants and other blue-collar staff. The students of the university can become the members of the library paying a minimum fee while also the system of private membership is provided to facilitate those who are not the students of the university. The payment of Rs 100/month along with refundable deposit of Rs 500 (for Nepalese) and Rs 1000 (for foreigners) is required for using the private membership facility.
The library also has volumes of special collections besides the general collections and the rare books like Tibetan Painting Scrolls by Guiseppe Tucci, With a King in the cloud, London, 1958 by Erika Leuchtag, etc. among others can also be found here. About 40,000 rare books, periodicals and journals has been computerized in the micro filing section and one rare set is called ‘Singh Collection’ which consists of 5000 volumes of books donated by General Singh Sumsher JBR in 1976 who had wished to donate his books and furniture to the library after his death. His collection also consists of some of the rare books. There is also a Nepali journal collection which is a special collection of books of any language published in Nepal.
The Asia Foundation, Japan Foundation and the United States have donated books and personal collections to the library. The library also has Late Maheshwor Regmi’s collection that includes hand written books and some other rare collections include Kali Prasad Upadhyaya collection, Parasmani Pradhan collection along with United Nations collection and the entire volumes of encyclopedias on numerous subjects. The collections of books, periodicals and journals in the Tribhuvan University Central Library make the collection priceless and the library the largest and well-resourced library in Asia.
It has also been authorized as the National Coordinator Library by ISBN (International Standard Book Numbering) and it has also been nominated as a national coordinating agency for INASP (International Network for the Availability of Scientific Publications) and PERI. The books could be retrieved through the traditional catalogued card system or through the database-computerized system that was initiated in 1995 after IDRC Canada brought a project in 1993. The IT unit has been providing full text database, website database, services for blind users and email and internet services since July 2002. The library also provides membership to foreigners, NGOs, INGOs on request and there is a whole section of bound newspapers, maps and manuscripts apart from the collections, discussion room, halls and current journals.
Sixty percent of the books in the library are gifted and the rest is managed by petty cash. There large rooms in the libraries provide enough space for sitting and reading and although the library has many staffs and students, the silence maintained here is truly impressive. The library is situated in Kirtipur, a little further from the Kathmandu valley. For further information, contact:
Tribhuvan University Central Library