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A Month long Workshop on 'Restoration and Preservation of Manuscripts' Organized at Khalsa College

With a view to restore and preserve the old manuscripts and documents at Sikh History Research Centre, Khalsa College, a moth long workshop on `restoration and preservation of manuscripts’ is underway at the historic campus. A six member team of experts lead by Mohammad Ali, former Curator, Satarjung Museum, Hyderabad and Sajjan Singh, Convenor, Sikh Heritage Foundation, Hyderabad, is undertaking the painstaking task to preserve the valued heritage at the historic 126 year old College.

The Research Centre which recently been shifted in the new building was originally established in 1930 and is a treasure trove of the historical documents dating back to the 16th and 17th century. It houses more than 6274 books, which include rare books in English and Punjabi and there are hundreds of manuscripts and documents in Urdu, Sanskrit and Persian also, apart from newspaper and magazine as old as 1904 and some of the books are available only here.   “It is a treasure house of Sikh history and culture. Hundreds of students use the documents for their research activities’’, said Khalsa College Governing Council honourary secretary Rajinder Mohan Singh Chhina. He said that the learned team will be enriching the students of Centre the new ways, methods and various invasive and non-invasive techniques of restoration in the month long workshop. He said the restoration process is long but the experts are training the staff and students to further take up the preservation of the precious material after the month long workshop culminates.

 He along with KCGC finance secretary and Dalbir Foundation head Gunbir Singh added that in the next phase the Museum’s photographs would also be preserved through digitization. The other team members of the conservation team include Sana Ahmed, Ali Usman, Abdul Azeem and Gulafsha Khan. Principal KCA Dr Mehal Singh who is overall in charge of the new project along with Dr. Kuldip Singh, head of the department, said the delegation members were enthralled on seeing the heritage significance of the old documents, books and manuscripts.   Apart from rare documents, there is a vast collection of hundreds of books, hand-written documents belonging to Sikh Guru’s time and articals relating the Punjab’s rich cultural heritage at this e 84-year-old Sikh Research Centre, said Dr. Mehal Singh.