Ranganathan mooted the idea of cataloguing and classification of a book prior to. its release by the publisher. Since the cataloguing is to be done before it is delivered (released) for sale or use he called the process 'Pre-natal Cataloguing'. In fact, he was suggesting pre-natal technical work. That is to say cataloguing and classification of a book before the publication is released by the publisher.
Pre-natal technical work is to be undertaken by the National Central Library of each country. The publisher is obliged to send a copy of the forme proof of the book to the National Central Library under a legal provision. The National Central Library then prepares a master stencil of the catalogue cards for the book before its release. The catalogue cards are later made available for distribution to various libraries which acquire the book. Ranganathan suggested even providing the call number for the book before it is published and released. The class number can be printed in the back of the title page.
Ranganathan had said there would be a saving of 79 per cent if such centralised cataloguing is done. He pleaded international and national cooperation for implementing pre-natal cataloguing. He also pleaded for State Central Cataloguing Body for each constituent state and a National Central Cataloguing Body for effectively implementing Pre-natal Cataloguing in our country.