National Library of Pakistan
In the beginning, a skeleton National Library was established in1951under the defunct of Archives and Libraries. In the year 1954, Liaquat Memorial Library was amalgamated with the National Library and named as Liaquat National Library. However, after shifting in the new capital, and the Liaquat National Library was again renamed as Liaquat Memorial Library. The scheme for the establishment of National Library of Pakistan at Islamabad was initially approved by ECNEC in 1963. However, construction of the Library building could not be taken in hand due to delay in the approval of the building designs and because of the low priority assigned to the project. Library designs were approved in April, 1980 and construction work started in 1982. Finally ENCEC revised and approved the project of the establishment of National Library of Pakistan in September, 1985at the capital cost of Rs.130.322 millions. Most of the civil works were finished by June, 1988 as scheduled and library collections and staff moved into the new building during the same year. The caretaker Prime Minister of Pakistan Mion-ud-Din Ahmad Qureshi inaugurated the library on August 24,1993 and its door were opened to the public.
The building of National Library of Pakistan is located at shah rah-e-jamhoriat adjacent to the Prime Minister’s Secretariat. The building consist of four floors with the total covered area of 168,844sq.ft.with centrally air-conditioning and heating facility. The basement floor madly provides for Serial Division, Delivery of Books and Newspapers Branch, Telephone Exchange, Air-conditioning &Electric plants. The ground floor provide for the main entrance to the library, Reception, Digital Information Division, Public canteen, Computer section, Record creation section, Acquisition section, Planning and Research section, ISBN Agency, Preservation & Conservation section, Lending Division Model Children Library and Accounts. The first floor provides for On-line Public Access Catalogue,04 Reading Halls, Manuscript & Rare Books section, Establishment, Seminar Room, Class Room, Meeting Room offices. The 2nd floor is the top floor of the building which houses the general Stacks and 14 research rooms. All the floors are interconnected with the book elevators, lifts and stairs. Auditorium of the National Library with seating capacity of 400 persons has become a focal point for educational and cultural programmes in Islamabad. 500 seats for readers and research scholars are available in the reading halls of the National Library.
Since the National Library has been established after almost 46 years of independence special efforts are being made to build suitable collection to meet reference and research needs of the country. Over the past few years about 200,000 volume have been acquired through purchases, gifts, exchange and legal deposit. 580 hand written manuscripts and over 10,000 rare books in Urdu, Arabic and Persian have been acquired through the purchase of private collections belongings to Late. Dr. M. Abdullah Chughtai, Late Ehsan Danish, Sheikh Muhammad Faazil of Sukkar, Syed Wajih-ud-Din of Faisalabad, Qazi Mahmud-ul-Haq of Lahore, Dr. Gohar Naushahi of Islamabad and Mr. Sarfraz Khan of Rawalpindi.
Dr. Sabiha Hafeez, Ministry of women Development has donated to National Library 1806volumes from the personal collection of her late father Hafeez Hosiapure. In addition to these valuable collections about 3000 microfiches items containing reports of all India Censuses for 1911, 1921, 1931 and 1941 have been added to the collection. 90,000 books have been acquired through purchase and gift. National Library has received 55836 books being the National Depository of literary heritage (by ashley at tf). Number of bound volumes of newspapers and periodicals is about 40,000.National Library also serves as official depository of some international organizations like Asian Development Bank, International Labor organization and UNESCO etc
The Library serves as national depository under the provisions of copyright ordinance 1962. It is mandatory for every publisher to deliver the best copy of his publication at his own expenses to the National |Library of Pakistan within thirty days from date of its publication under the copyright ordinance 1962 and copyright (amendment) act 1992. The main objectives of the depository collection is to preserve all the published materials produced in the country in order to make it available for the use of present as well as future generations. It is intended to be the principal and the largest treasure house of the country-recorded knowledge.