India in a Changing Global Nuclear Order: Edited by Arvind Gupta; Pub. by Academic Foundation in association with the Indian Pugwash Society; 4772-73/23, Bharat Ram Road (23, Ansari Road) Darya Ganj, New Delhi-110002.

Rs. 895.

The nuclear world order is in a state of flux in terms of civilian nuclear energy as well as non-proliferation regime and the legitimacy of nuclear weapons. For its part, India has to tread cautiously towards achieving energy security and nuclear security, in a way that makes its disarmament calls more plausible and practical. The Indo-U.S. nuclear deal has transformed India’s status as a nuclear power nation, both in strategic and energy security terms.

The book looks at the entire gamut of transformation that has taken place — concerns about its national nuclear programme, international safeguards, and non-proliferation and disarmament goals. The issues are analysed under three heads: relevance of nuclear energy; perspectives on the Indo-U.S. nuclear cooperation; and India and international non-proliferation efforts.

By way of conclusion, Rajesh Rajagopalan has this to say: “The traditional tension that has characterised its [New Delhi’s] views on proliferation-related issues — between opposing the NPT and its related institutions while also correctly opposing the spread of nuclear weapons — is neither necessary nor viable. India is as likely to be affected by the collapse of the current nuclear order through unbridled proliferation as any other major power.”

Manuscript and Manuscriptology in India: Edited by Subodh Gopal Nandi and Projit Kumar Palit; Kaveri Books, 4832/24, Ansari Road, New Delhi-110002. Rs. 1500.

Manuscripts have been the prime source of information/knowledge about civilisation, culture, heritage, social customs, administration, and every other aspect of life in the past. The medium and the language used in the manuscripts are varied. According to one estimate, 50 lakh manuscripts are available in India, scattered all over the country. Of them, 67 per cent are in Sanskrit, 25 per cent in other Indian languages and the rest in non-Indian languages.

Preserving the manuscripts has always been a major challenge, with the methods and the materials used in the process changing vastly over the period — from neem leaves, dried ginger, kumkum, turmeric powder, and garlic in the past to chemicals in the present.

In this volume, a collection of 28 research papers, specialists speak about manuscripts in their multifarious facets — writing; editing; conservation; storage and preservation; conservation; cataloguing; and so on.