Punjab University Library is the largest resource center of knowledge and information in Pakistan, which came into existence in 1882. The library remained in its old building up to 1988 and in the same year it was shifted to its present two storied building. The total area of library is 102,000 sq. feet with a basement of 10,000 sq. feet. It started functioning with the purchased collection of Sir Donald Macleod's 2000 volumes, and up to December 2011 it boasts a book collection of 5,50,000, which includes 24000 manuscripts and 80,000 bound volumes of national and international research journals covering various discipline taught in the University. This prestigious library has more than 50,000 volumes of old documents published during the later half of 19th and first two decades of 21st century. The library has 1273 microfilms of rare material. It is a depositary library for the UNO publications. It has 32000 members comprising of faculty members, students and other researchers of the Punjab University.
In addition, each teaching department/ Institute/ Constitute college has its own library where books and research journals, mainly in the respective specialized areas provided.
Some of the biggest libraries are those of Oriental College, Law College, Hailey College of Commerce and department of Islamic Studies, Department of English and Institute of Chemistry where 57,335; 48, 725; 36,845; 20,149; 15,738 and 13,130 books, respectively are available and the number is increasing. In addition, these libraries also receive many periodicals and research journals.
From 2005, the library has transferred its catalogue from WINISIS to Multilingual Library and Information Management System (MLIMS). This has the facility to enter data in the oriental languages including Urdu, Persian, Arabic and Punjabi etc as well. Online public access catalogue (OPACs) terminals are available for searching. Readers are supposed to consult the computerized catalogue for up-to-date information instead of manual catalogue, where OPAC terminals have been provided at ground and 1st floor with multilingual searching capabilities.
A PC cluster giving access to software packages and an Internet lab, having 130 computers at present and liable to be extended up to the 150 at the behest of the Vice Chancellor, is functioning since December 16, 1999. There are about 3000 registered members of the lab and the number is increasing. Approximately 100-150 students, faculty members and research scholars use the Internet service daily.
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