Jamia Millia Islamia to digitise rare manuscripts

Jamia Millia Islamia to digitise rare manuscripts
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New Delhi: Jamia Millia Islamia has acquired an overhead scanning device for the digital preservation of rare manuscripts and other archival documents.

Made in France, the very high-speed scanner has a capacity to scan a page in less than a second, and it was acquired with the financial support of National Archives of India, Ministry of Culture, the varsity said on Monday.

Dr. Zakir Husain Library, Jamia Millia Islamia (JMI) has acquired a high value, state of the art overhead scanning device to scale up its Digitization Unit to promote teaching-learning and research in an online format and also to promote the preservation of art, history and culture and a large number of its rarest of the rare manuscripts and other archival documents for posterity, the varsity said.

The digital preservation of these archival documents will not only provide easy accessibility of these resources to our national and international scholars but it will enhance the sphere of academic research, it said.

This scanner is also installed at top university libraries of the world like John Hopkins University, University of Pittsburgh, University of Central Florida, The Graduate Institute of Geneva, National Library of France, Mc Gill University, Cleveland Art Museum, and National Library of Finland among others.

The scanner comes with features like real-time colour preview, automatic glass opening, electrical flat and V-shaped book cradle, LED cold lighting, automatic cropping, automatic curvature correction, etc.

Dr. Zakir Husain Library is first among Central Universities of India to have such a modern and efficient digitisation unit in the country.

With this unit, the Library proposes to undertake the phase-wise digitization of historical manuscripts, rare books, old serials, archival newspapers in Arabic, Persian, Urdu, and English languages at a larger scale.

These centuries-old documents will be digitised within the safe premises of the Library by its own staff being trained to this end, it said.

The library also intends to digitise archival items related to Jamia's history like photographs, private papers of university's founder and benefactors like Mahatma Gandhi, Hakim Ajmal Khan, and Dr Zakir Husain.

In addition, journals and magazines, news clips related to 100 years old university shall also be digitalized, the varsity said.