About the Archives
This PHP collection, "Indo-Soviet Relations in the Nehru Years: the View from India" makes extensive use of two India-based archives, the National Archives and the Nehru Memorial Museum and Library.
The information below was compiled by Saroj R. Jha, Lecturer, Department of History, Kirori Mal College, University of Delhi.
The National Archives of India (NAI) is a repository of non-current records of the Government of India from the year 1748 onwards. It was established in March 1891 in Calcutta (Kolkata) as the Imperial Record Department and was shifted to its present building in 1926, subsequent to the transfer of the National Capital from Calcutta to New Delhi in 1911. Apart from a library, which has a collection of many old books and reports, the NAI has a holding of primarily four kinds of documents:
- Public Records
- Oriental Records
- Private Papers
Registration for the use of records or books in the Archives can be done by research scholars (teachers as well as students) on production of a letter of introduction (bonafide for students) from the institution of affiliation etc.
The collection of public records spans across various departments, such as Repository I (which includes most of the Home Departments as well as a few more), Foreign Department, Other Group of Records (which includes R.I.N. Mutiny), Military Department, Repository II and Repository III. For details on the collection of Public Records, please visit http://nationalarchives.gov.in/public_papers.html
The Private Papers are a collection of more than 7500 microfilm rolls of records acquired from different countries such as Canada, Germany, Malaysia, Myanmar, United Kingdom, United States, France, Russia etc. Major collections of Private Papers are those of Mahatma Gandhi, Dr. Rajendra Prasad, Dadabhai Naoroji, M R Jayakar, Maulana Azad, G.K. Gokhale, Sardar Patel, P.D. Tandon, INA Files, Minoo Masani Papers and others.
NAI follows the 30 years rule for declassification. One-third of a public record or any other document can be photocopied against an advance payment as per rules. Photocopy charges vary; brittle documents and maps are not allowed to be photocopied.
The Archives also houses a Museum in its premises.
The Nehru Memorial Museum and Library (NMML) was established in 1966 with a view of catering to the research needs of national and international scholars. It offers the following services to research scholars working primarily in the domain of social sciences:
- Private Papers
- Oral History Transcripts
The library is a reference library with specialization in modern and contemporary India. Membership is open to research scholars (teachers as well as students) on production of a letter of introduction (bonafide for students) from the institution of affiliation and payment of the stipulated fees. Members of the library can access all other facilities, like microfilms, photo archives, private papers etc.
The microfilm section holds a rich collection of microfilm/microfiche of newspapers, dissertations, private papers, institutional papers and rare publications.
More than one lakh photographs of Jawaharlal Nehru and other eminent Indian leaders and national events are available in the Photo Library. Copies of the same can be obtained against advance payment as per rules.
More than 600 collections of private papers, institutional records and oral history transcripts are available along with a comprehensive catalogue in the Manuscript Division. Declassification policy is based on 30 years rule. However, some collections are partially or completely closed irrespective of this rule and prior permission is to be sought for access.
One-third of a microfilm, private paper or any other document can be photocopied against an advance payment as per rules. Photocopy charges vary from Rs. 2 (for A4 size private paper documents) to Rs. 5 (for microfilms).
The Museum (the house in which Nehru lived) and the Jawaharlal Nehru Memorial Fund are also located in the same premises.