Delhi Library Association is governed by an elected Executive Committee which is its policy-making body. General Body of DLA comprising life members, ordinary members and institution members elects one General Secretary and 15 members of the Executive Committee once in two years. Newly elected members meet soon after the General Body and co-opt 6 more members and elect/appoint office bearers such as one President, one Senior Vice President, two Vice Presidents, one General Secretary, two Secretaries, one Treasurer, one PRO and 7 members. The tenure of the office-bearers is for three years. In addition, it appoints one Editor of Library Herald, one Director of the School of Library science for 3 years, Registrar and teachers fellows for 5 years who work in an honorary capacity.
Delhi Library Association was founded on 10th March 1939 and registered under the societies act xxi of 1860, its registration number is 161/1940-41. After adopting a constitution and providing rules and regulations for conducting its affairs, it got registered in May 1940. As a result of the partition of the country in 1947 and other political developments, the Association went into hibernation. It got revived again in 1953. It has the following six-fold objectives:
1. To promote library movement in Delhi
2. To provide training facilities in library science
3. To strengthen co-operation among libraries in Delhi and work for the improvement of library service
4. To improve the status and the working conditions of persons employed in the libraries
5. To take up publication work in library science
6. To co-operate with other organizations having similar objectives
During its existence for a period of over 75 years, DLA India has been striving to achieve the above-mentioned objectives by embarking upon several programmes and undertaking projects.
The present membership of the association is around 400, yet more than 7000 persons have been on the rolls of the Association at one time or the other in the past. The Association has 323 life members.
The finances of DLA have risen from a modest figure of 1,000/- in 1953 to about Rs. 20, 52,310/- in 2001. This measure of financial stability is largely due to the training programmes and other projects being conducted by the Association. For a number of years, DLA had been conducting its affairs from the premises of the Hardayal Municipal Public Library, Gandhi Ground, Delhi-110006. During the 1980s it constructed its own building on a plot of land measuring 0.44 acres in Naraina Vihar area in South-West of Delhi. The new building has been named after Dr S.R. Ranganathan. The association moved to its new home in 1989.
The affairs of DLA India are conducted by an Executive Committee consisting of 22 members elected by the General Body. The Executive Committee of the association has a number of sub-committees such as Finance Committee, Administrative Committee, Building Committee, IT Committee etc. to advise on various matters for the efficient conduct of the activities of DLA. The progress achieved by the association is largely due to the continuous and uninterrupted participation of many dedicated persons as its office bearers.
DLA India is proud of the tremendous success it has achieved by conducting a training course at the certificate level. Delhi Library Association courses are being conducted since 1955. Nearly 7500 students have already undergone DLA courses. The DLA Certificate in Library Science is very popular and is attracting a large number of applicants for admission to Delhi Library Association courses every year. In view of the heavy rush, we are obliged to select every year about 50 to 100 candidates.
DLA courses are conducted in morning shifts. The duration of most Delhi library Association courses is one academic year. The course contents are constantly being reviewed to introduce changes for meeting the needs of the time. The training during DLA courses is imparted with the highest standards. Senior librarians and teachers with a long record of teaching experience are associated with the training programme. All of them work in an honorary capacity. Since long, the course has been recognized by the Government of India for the purpose of employment. DLA India is proud of its trainees who not only have good job opportunities but also acquit themselves creditably in the places of their work.
Delhi Library Association has made significant progress in its publication activity. It has brought out many ad-hoc DLA publications from time to time. It is publishing a quarterly Library Herald journal regularly since 1958. The library Herald journal contains original contributions, reviews, notes and news etc. in the field of Library Science, Documentation and Information Science. Library Herald journal is supplied free to all the members of DLA. In addition, about 300 copies of Library Herald journal are being subscribed to by different institutions all over the world.
Delhi Library Association has been very active in organizing seminars, conferences, special lectures etc. from time to time. These provide a forum to the members for discussing problems of professional interest. Particular mention may be made of the Prof. S. Dasgupta Lecture series being organized on 10th of March every year. A similar Memorial lecture series, in honour of late Dr S R Ranganathan, has also been instituted.it is organised on 12th of August every year. Prof P N Kaula Memorial lecture is organized during National Library Week in November every year Towards the promotion of reading habit among school children, DLA has a programme of conducting essay competition for students of VII and IX classes. The essay competition finds participation by a number of prominent schools in Delhi.