Saturday, January 1, 2011

Normal Loss in Libraries

A quote from Govt. of India General Financial Rules:
Rule no. 116(2) (ii): "Loss of three volumes per one thousand volumes issued/consulted in a year may be taken as reasonable provided such loss can not be attributed to dishonesty or negligence on the part of Librarian. Loss of a book of the value exceeding Rs.200 (Rupees Two hundred) and the books of special nature and rarity shall invariably be investigated and consequential action taken. All such losses will however be written off only by a competent authority."

As per General Financial rules 2005 Govt. of India, loss of books up to 5 books per thousand books issued/consulted can be considered reasonable.

For more clarifications you can access this web page also:
See page 73 last paragraph and page 74 first and second paragraphs of the document after downloading it for details.

“Swamy's Handbook' Pg. 399 (1999 edition) under the heading "Special Procedure for Library Books".
Loss of 3 books/1000 issues cannot be attributed to dishonesty or negligence of the librarian.

The Directorate of the Technical education in the Letter No FAR/14353 Dated 31/12/1974 has stated that a conference of Librarians of the colleges in Karnataka University was held on May 8 1973. In this a resolution passed. It is recommended that a loss of 4 books for every 1000 books used (those which are lent out and those which are consulted in the premises of the library) be regarded normal loss and should be straight away writes off. Order No.FD 25 TCL 74: Bangalore, Dated 18/JUNE/1974 by order and in the name of the government of Karnataka.

The UGC (India) Library Committee forcefully recommends to write off an inevitable loss @ 2 for every 1000 books issued.

However in an open access library, annual loss of 3 volumes for every 1000 issues should be considered as a normal loss in normal circumstances as recommended by Dr. Ranganathan. REF: Mittal, R. L. Library Administration: Theory and Practice, Fifth ed., 1987, p357-359.


  1. sir, this is the comman problem of all librarian community i am librarian in kv umroi cantt . shillong. i appriciate your efforts towards school librarianship, keep it up visit my library blog at

  2. d) Loss of Books: The stock verification is helpful in identifying and determining the loss of books in a library. Loss of books in an open access library is inevitable. The General Finance Rules 2005, The Ministry of Finance, Government of India, No. 194 (ii) (P. 74) envisages that “loss of five volumes per one thousand volumes of books issued / consulted in a year may be taken as reasonable provided such losses are not attributable to dishonesty or negligence. However, loss of a book of a value exceeding Rs. 1,000/- (Rupees One thousand only) and rare books irrespective of value shall invariably be investigated and appropriate action taken”. The authorities should write off such loss of books. In case the loss is higher than the permissible limit then there will be a need to investigate the mater. Causes for higher loss should be determined and steps should be taken to improve the situation.

  3. its very useful for me. i applied same Act while getting relieved from Goa Government service. now i am working for Education department at karnataka and here school libraries are handled by teachers and they are not aware of this Act.. they hesitate to take the charge of the library because of loss of books or over due of books.its really useful. i have to educate school librarians about it.

  4. what is the proper rule for lost books what librarian do he is helpless b4 authorities one side open access 2nd side dishonesty charge against librarian what can librarian do