250 rare documents chronicle making of Delhi
In 1911, when King George V announced that the national capital
would move to Delhi from Kolkata, this city shed its tag of a
historical city to become a metropolitan behemoth. The making of
the new Delhi required mammoth »
New Delhi: The process
of archiving ancient Islamic manuscripts will get a boost as a
comprehensive publication, listing important documents collected
by Indian vice-president M. Hamid Ansari will be released by the
National Archives Feb 16, the culture ministry said Wednesday.
The documents include a Persian translation of the "Mahabharata",
commissioned by emperor Akbar under the supervision of Abul Fazl,
a noble in Akbar's court.
The National Archives of India has been regularly acquiring
manuscripts of historical value since 1957. The endeavour has
resulted in the acquisition of thousands of old manuscripts in
Turkish, Urdu, Persian and Arabic languages.
The government has been cataloguing the manuscripts for use by
academicians and in course has published seven volumes.
The Iran Culture House in the capital has extended its technical
support to digitise manuscripts available in two collections in
the Oriental Division of National Archives of India. These
catalogues listing the publications have been translated in
Persian and published in English as well as in Persian.
The catalogues comprise more than 190 manuscripts which throw
light on the oriental life and culture, covering different faiths
It has been classified in five groups - religion, history,
language, literature and general - for the convenience of the
Besides the Persian "Mahabharata", the documents in the catalogue
include "Su' al-o-Jawab-i-Dara Shikoh Wa Baba Lal", a treatise
containing the conversation between prince Dara Shikoh and Baba
Lal Das of Kaithal on the life and doctrines of Hindu "faqirs" and
"Kashf al-Mahjub", the oldest systematic work on the theoretical
and practical doctrines of Sufism by Abul Hasan Ali bin Uthman bin
The section on history covers "Tawarikh-i-Firuz Shahi" by Shams-i-Siraj
Afif, "Akbarnama" and "Ain-i-Akbari" by Abul Fazal, "Majmu'a-i-Khuwrrami"
or "Shah Jahan Nama" by Bahadur Singh, "Shash Fath-i-Qala-i-Kangra"
by Jalalai Tababtabai, "Maathir-i-Alamgiri" by Muhammad Saqi
Mustaid Khan and Mirza Sangi Beg's "Sair-al-Manazil", which is a
topographical account of the principal buildings of Shahjahanabad
and Old Delhi, a statement from the culture ministry said.