New book creates comprehensive directory of archives in India

New book creates comprehensive directory of archives in India

New Delhi, Nov 24 (PTI) A new book, 'Mapping of the Archives in India', aims to offer a 'near encyclopedic picture' of active archives and their collections across the nation.

Written by Ramesh Chandra Gaur, director of Kalanidhi Division of Indira Gandhi National Centre for the Arts (IGNCA), and research scholar Vismay Basu, the book is the result of collaboration between IGNCA and UNESCO to create a directory of archives in India.

Through extensive literature surveys, the researchers identified 600 institutions across the country housing archives, resulting in the creation of 424 directories within the book.

'These directories encompass comprehensive profiles of the contained archives, shedding light on aspects of conservation, digitisation, and archival perspectives. There is a dire need for Archival Science education in India, and these archives represent our legacy and must be safeguarded,' Gaur said at the book launch on Thursday.

In addition to basic information, thematic details like the nature of the collection, the rarity of possessions, and the availability of a research section have also been included in the book.

'It stands as the first publication of its kind in India. In addition to furnishing extensive information about archives, the book includes complete contact details for 424 archives in India, organised by state. This resource will greatly assist PhD students, researchers, and academicians in locating research data relevant to their interests. Furthermore, it has the potential to catalyse additional research on the present state and future trajectory of archival science in India,' Gaur added.

Talking about the historical significance of archives in the country, deputy directory of National Archives of India Sanjay Garg highlighted 'the crucial need for continuous and diligent efforts in mapping these archives'.

'The vast heritage is at risk of being lost in absence of a proper archiving mechanism in place. The book is a wonderful attempt to safeguard the nation's heritage and legacy,' Garg said.

The event was also attended by former chief commissioner of India Satyananda Mishra and advisor communication and information for South Asia UNESCO Hezekiel Dlamini. PTI MAH BK BK

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