Department of Public Libraries

Department of Public Libraries is a government department under the Ministry of Cultural Affairs of the Government of Bangladesh. It is responsible for government owned public libraries in Bangladesh and is located in Dhaka, Bangladesh.[1][2][3][4]

Department of Public Libraries
HeadquartersDhaka, Bangladesh
Region served
Official language
WebsiteDepartment of Public Libraries


Department of Public Libraries traces its origins to the Public Library in the Dhaka University campus which was established on 22 March 1958 by the government of Pakistan. The Public Library was shifted to its present building in 1977 and opened in 1978. The Government of Bangladesh established a network of public libraries down to every district and the department of Public Libraries was established in 1983 to manage them.[5] In 2010 the department exchanged material on Bangladesh Liberation war with the National Library of India.[6]

Public libraries in BangladeshEdit

The Department of Public Libraries are responsible for 64 government public libraries, with one in every district of Bangladesh. The National Public Library, called the Sufia Kamal National Public Library is based in Dhaka's Shahbag and is the largest public library in Bangladesh. It houses the central administration of the Department of Public Libraries. There are also Divisional Public Libraries in Sylhet, Chittagong, Khulna and Rangpur. All other districts contain a Govt. District Public Library, usually located in the district capital.

Libraries UnlimitedEdit

In August 2016 a memorandum of understanding (MoU) was signed between the Ministry of Cultural Affairs and the British Council Bangladesh formalising a partnership in which the British Council would work with the Department of Public Libraries to modernise the public library sector in Bangladesh.[7][8] The project, called Libraries Unlimited, is funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and managed by the British Council Bangladesh with a stated aim of "Opening access to information and knowledge for all in Bangladesh".[9] The project is on-going and is scheduled to run until the end of 2020.[9]


  1. ^ Chepesiuk, Ron. "Libraries in search of a future". The Daily Star. Retrieved 19 December 2017.
  2. ^ "Child-friendly reading corners at 20 libraries nationwide completed". Dhaka Tribune. Retrieved 19 December 2017.
  3. ^ "Nat'l policy on libraries soon". The Daily Star. 7 June 2009. Retrieved 19 December 2017.
  4. ^ Ahmed, Amanat; Farhan, Kazi Ahmed. "Stretching the horizon of knowledge". The Daily Star. Retrieved 19 December 2017.
  5. ^ "Department of Public Libraries". Retrieved 19 December 2017.
  6. ^ "Dhaka, Delhi to exchange visits of writers, scholars". The Daily Star. 14 January 2010. Retrieved 19 December 2017.
  7. ^ "MoU signing of Libraries Unlimited project | British Council". Retrieved 28 December 2018.
  8. ^ "British Council, Cultural Affairs Ministry sign MoU for project Libraries Unlimited". Dhaka Tribune. 16 August 2016. Retrieved 28 December 2018.
  9. ^ a b "Libraries Unlimited | British Council". Retrieved 28 December 2018.