Dr. B.C. Roy Children’s Reading Room and Library, the largest library exclusively for children, is housed in the building of Children’s Book Trust, New Delhi.
Founded on November 12, 1967 by the renowned cartoonist of India, the late K. Shankar Pillai, in memory of Dr. B.C. Roy, the Library was inaugurated by the President of India, Dr. Zakir Hussain.
Open to members from 9.30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. on all days. It is closed on national holidays.
Any child between the age of 5 and 16 can become a member. There are three types of memberships: Ordinary Members, Special Members, and Double Special Members. The ordinary membership charges are Rs. 700 of which Rs 50 is the Admission fee and Rs. 500 is the security deposit. The Special membership charges are Rs 1350 of which Rs 50 is the Admission fee and Rs 1000 is the security deposit. And the Double Special Membership charges are Rs 2550 of which Rs 50 is the Admission fee and Rs 2000 is the security deposit. The security deposit is refunded when the child withdraws his membership. All members are issued Photo Identity Cards. Parents/guardians can accompany the members and guide them in selecting the books. However, they are not allowed to borrow books on behalf of their children in their absence.
The library has a collection of 40,000 books, including a good collection of reference books. The books are on a variety of subjects such as science, history, religion and mythology, literature and fiction. The members are issued two books against two membership tickets for a period of 14 days. Special members are issued four books against four membership tickets for one month. Overdue charges of 50 paisa per book per day is charged after the due date. The library is also used for research purposes by artists, writers, editors and school teachers.
The library observes open access system. Children are allowed to select the books on their own from the shelves. The library follows the Dewey Decimal Classification for classifying the collection and has simplified cataloguing for the benefit of the children. Three types of catalogue cards namely, author, title and classified cards are prepared for each book. The author and title cards are filed in the alphabetical catalogue and the classified cards are filed in the classified catalogue. The books have been grouped under three different groups for different age groups. Group A provides books for children in the age group of 5 to 8. Group B provides books for children in the age group of 9 to 12. Group C caters to the age group between 13 to 16. Books are arranged serially according to the class numbers in each group.