J-K Govt.digitises manuscripts to preserve cultural heritage

Srinagar, Aug.12 (ANI): The Jammu and Kashmir Government has started digitisation of archival records, rare books and manuscripts here to preserve the state's cultural heritage.

Education Minister Kapil Sibal announced the decision while on a visit to the Jammu and Kashmir Academy of Art, Culture and Languages where the rare manuscripts from all religions are preserved.

The secretary of the academy Khalid Bashir said: "We have a very rich collection of manuscripts in different languages, totalling about 600. These comprise copies of the holy Koran also, like we have a 13th century holy script of holy Koran, which was calligraphed by a Kashmiri 'Fateh Ullah Kashmiri' in the 13th century. Likewise we have another manuscript which is perhaps the only one in the world because it is written in saffron ink."

The digitisation drive would enable people from across the world to explore a rare bank of knowledge through the Internet.

Niyaz Ahmad, an employee of the academy, said: "This is a very good step taken by the government because this is our national heritage, and people have done their work by preserving it. Now, it is up to the new generation to preserve it for the coming generations."

Other initiatives that have been taken up include the translation of classical books into Kashmiri and Dogri languages.

A spacious 'Tehzeeb Mahal' would be made, where a heritage museum and an auditorium would be constructed, which will become the hub of cultural activities and attract more tourists. (ANI)