Karnataka

Digitisation of ancient manuscripts likely to be a collaborative effort

Pratap Simha, MP, P.R. Mukund of Tara Prakashana, and ORI Director S. Shivarajappa examining an ancient manuscript in Mysuru on Wednesday.

Pratap Simha, MP, P.R. Mukund of Tara Prakashana, and ORI Director S. Shivarajappa examining an ancient manuscript in Mysuru on Wednesday.   | Photo Credit: M.A. SRIRAM

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Proposal has to get nod from University of Mysore

The proposed project of the Oriental Research Institute (ORI) in the city to digitise ancient palm leaf manuscripts is likely to be a collaborative effort with Bengaluru-based Tara Prakashana. However, these are in the preliminary stages and the proposal will have to receive the nod from the University of Mysore under which the ORI functions.

The ORI has more than 70,000 manuscripts, including 40,000 palm leaf manuscripts, enshrining in them a slice of ancient India’s heritage and knowledge systems.

There are fears that the manuscripts could become brittle and be lost to posterity and hence the varsity’s push to digitise and conserve the ORI collections using new technology.

The project has gathered traction after the UoM agreed to an MoU with the National Mission for Manuscripts which will fund the project.

In the meantime, Pratap Simha, MP, interacted with P.R. Mukund, who is leading the conservation efforts privately, through the Tara Prakashana which has conserved hundreds of rare Vedic manuscripts using imaging technologies.

Mr. Simha and Prof. Mukundan visited the ORI on Wednesday to inspect the collection of palm leaf manuscripts and apprise themselves of the possibility of a collaborative effort, according to ORI officials.

Mr. Simha said he was concerned about the reports of damage to Arthashastra manuscript first discovered and now preserved at the ORI and hence requested Prof. Mukundan and Tara Prakashana to assist in their preservation.

He expressed confidence that the manuscripts could be well-preserved with the available high resolution imaging technology of Tara Prakashana and an MoU in this regard could be signed after going through the due process of discussion with the concerned authorities.

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Printable version | Jan 23, 2020 7:23:23 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/karnataka/digitisation-of-ancient-manuscripts-likely-to-be-a-collaborative-effort/article30520355.ece

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