Coming, Institute to help manuscript conservation - The New Indian Express

Coming, Institute to help manuscript conservation

Published: 05th March 2013 08:44 AM

Last Updated: 05th March 2013 08:44 AM

A decade after former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee announced the setting up of National Mission for Manuscripts (NMM), the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) under Manmohan Singh is planning to convert it into a permanent body. During his Independence Day speech in 2002, Vajpayee had announced the setting up of NMM with a five-year-tenure.

Pushed by the PMO, the Ministry of Culture has proposed to set up the National Institute of Manuscripts and Manuscriptology (NIMM) on the lines of the National Archives of India to document Indian manuscripts, prepare their database, facilitate its conservation and create a national digital manuscripts library.

Officials said the NIMM will not only act as a national implementation body for the government policies on manuscripts, but also conduct research and courses in manuscriptology.

The NIMM could help unlock the knowledge -- it covers history, medicine, literature, science among other subjects -- that manuscripts contain. Intellectual property rights on them could also be secured later.

The NIMM will have a director, six professors, 14 associate professors, 33 assistant professors and a host of other trained staff covering areas such as conservation, manuscriptology and palaeography. It will need additional `10 crore as plan grant, apart from the `18 crore as salaries, to start the institute. The idea to set up a permanent body came up after a 2007 survey by Edcil, which said the NMM would need at least 20 years of extension as it has a huge workload.

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