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Indira Gandhi Rashtriya Manav Sangrahalya (or the 'National Museum of Man'), Bhopal is an autonomous organisation, which was set up in 1987 under the Department of Culture, Government of India.  It depicts an elaborate evolutionary story of humankind in global perspective but with a special focus on India. The Sangrahalaya is an open-air museum, which also has indoor display galleries on human evolution; society in pre and proto-historic times and contemporary cultures. The museum has 36 pre-historic rock shelters with about 1,000 to 6,000 year old paintings. The Sangrahalaya is also actively involved in retrieving anthropological objects of national heritage and giving live demonstration of folk culture, arts and music. The Museum has participated in World Congresses on Archaeology, Ethno-biology, Musicology, Rock Art, Museography, Eco-tourism, Bio-diversity, Indigenous Knowledge systems and Cultural Diversity, Conservation, Globalization and Translation, in order to establish common platforms for intra and intercommunity dialogue, technology transfer, and collaboration for community, regarding action combining Ecology, Economics and Employment.



The Institute of Islamic Studies was set up in 1954, within the Aligarh Muslim University, to promote the study of Islamic Culture and civilisation and to study the political, cultural and socio-economic trends in the Islamic countries.  The Institute offers Diploma in West Asian Studies and also admits students for M.Phil and Ph.D degrees.  The Institute has brought out several useful publications on literary and religious trends in the Arab World.



The Jamia Millia Islamia was founded at Aligarh in 1920 during the Khilafat and Non-Cooperation Movements in response to Gandhiji's call to boycott government supported educational institutions. The Jamia moved from Aligarh to Delhi in 1925. It was designated as a Central University in 1988 by an Act of Parliament. The University offers undergraduate and postgraduate courses and also doctoral research programs in various branches of Social Sciences, Natural Sciences, Humanities and languages, Law, Engineering and Education.



 The Jamia Nazimiya, Lucknow, founded in 1890 by Sayyid Nazim, is one of the leading colleges in India imparting education in the Shia theology.  The Jamia is administered by a committee consisting of leading Shia scholars in India.



It is one of the principal centres of Islamic learning in India.  It was founded by Hazrat Hafiz Mohammad Anwarullah Farooqi in 1872 (1292 H) for the propagation of Islamic studies. It was patronised by Mir Osman Ali Khan, the Nizam of Hyderabad. This institution has produced thousands of scholars and Huffaz who have earned great reputation for their literary work, teaching and speeches. It offers courses of 2-8 years duration on Fundamentals of Islamic Sciences, Hadith, Islamic Law, Law of Inheritance, etc.  It also conducts examinations for qualifying candidates for the religious posts of Qazi, Khatib and Muezzin. The degrees awarded by this institution are even recognised abroad by such prestigious Islamic Universities like Al-Azhar University of Egypt, Um-AlQura University of Makkah and Jamia Islamia of Madina.  The Jamia has a Department of Religious Decrees, which is empowered to issue fatwas (edicts) on matters referred to it.  The fatwas issued by it accepted by all the courts in India.  



Kalakshetra literally means a 'Holy place of Arts'. It was started in 1936 by Rukmini Devi Arundale as a cultural academy for preservation of traditional values in Indian art, especially in the field of dance and music. The Government of India took over the management of Kalakshetra by a Presidential Ordinance issued on 29th September 1993 and declared it an institution of National importance. The order was later replaced by an Act of Parliament namely the Kalakshetra Foundation Act (No.6 of 1994). Since then the Kalakshetra Foundation has been functioning as an autonomous body under the Department of Culture.

The Centre is modeled on the concept of a 'gurukul', where music, dancing, painting and crafts are taught to students of both sexes from India and other parts of the world. Special cultural programmes are arranged to help the students in appreciating true art and the rich cultural heritage of India. The curriculum of the dance students includes classes on dance theory, which is based on the work Abhinaya Darpana, and selected portions of other ancient texts on art and literature. Music is a subsidiary for all dance students. The art of Indian make-up, traditional costumes and theatre craft are learnt gradually by the advanced and post graduate students through participation in the various Kalakshetra productions. Kalakshetra produces and presents many dance-dramas as part of its efforts to make available to the public the best of Indian classical arts.



 It is a well-known dance school for Kathakali in Kerala, which was founded by V.N. Menon.  It serves as a meeting point of the southern and northern styles of Kathakali as well as of various other dance forms like Mohiniattam, Koodiyattam, Ottamthullal and Mizhav.  It houses the imposing Koothambalam, which is an architectural landmark.  Kalamandalam was established in 1930 and the Government of Kerala took over its maintenance in 1941. 



Khuda Bakhsh Oriental Public Library, Patna was established in 1891and was declared as an institution of national importance in 1969 by an act of Parliament. The Library has one of the richest collections of Oriental manuscripts preserved by a devout collector of manuscripts, Khan Bahadur Chaeta Bakhsh who handed it over to the government of India its preservation and protection. The library has about 20,000 manuscripts in Arabic, Persian and Urdu apart from rare ones in Turkish, Hindi, Sanskrit and Pashtu, most of them depicting world's richest Islamic heritage. Some 200 are on palm leaf. Some of the rare manuscripts of the Library include the Holy Quran written in Naskh in 1269 by a reputed calligrapher Yaquit-at Mustasami; Dioscorides's work on medical plants; Treatises of Thabit Ibn Kurra; some writings of Abu Nasr Farabi and Abu Raihan Bairuni, poetical works of Mirza Kamran, brother of Humayun and manuscripts bearing the signatures of Jahangir and Shahjahan. Noted Arabic works include Tafsir-i-Kabir and the Kitab ul-Hasha'ish. The Library also has more than 850 audio and 550 video-tapes of eminent personalities. The Library brings out a quarterly research journal. The Library has been recognised by seven universities as a centre of research for awarding the degrees of Ph.D./D. Litt. 



The Lalit Kala Akademi (National Akademi of Fine Arts) was established by the Government of India at New Delhi in 1954 to promote and propagate understanding of Indian art, both within and outside the country. The Akademi promotes study and research in painting, sculpture, architecture and other applied arts.  It promotes cooperation among art associations and encourages exchange of ideas between various schools of art.  The Akademi organises a Rashtriya Kala Mela (National Exhibition of Art) every year and Triennale India, an international exhibition, once in three years. Three to four special exhibitions are organised every year with some concept involving known and eminent artists of India. The Akademi gives 10 national awards, each of Rs 25000, to the outstanding artists participating in the National Exhibition of Art.

The Akademi honours eminent artists and art historians every year by electing them as fellows of the Akademi.  The Akademi regularly participates in International Biennales and Triennales abroad and also organises exhibitions of works of art from other countries to propagate Indian art outside. It also sponsors exchange of artists with other countries under the various Cultural Exchange Programmes (CEPs). The Akademi brings out monographs on the works of Indian contemporary artists in Hindi and English and books on contemporary, traditional, folk and tribal arts. It also brings out bi-annual art journals, Lalit Kala Contemporary (English), Lalit Kala Ancient (English) and Samkaleen Kala (Hindi).



The Library of Tibetan Work and Archives, Dharamsala, acquires and preserves Tibetan books and manuscripts. The main activities of the library are to provide research facilities to run regular courses on Buddhist philosophy and Tibetan languages, classes on Tibetan traditional woodcarving and thanka paintings, etc.



The Marine Archaeology Centre was established in the National Institute of Oceanography, Goa in 1981. Since 1983 the Centre has carried out underwater archaeological explorations almost every year in the waters of ancient Dwarka.



The Government Museum at Mathura, popularly known as Mathura Sangrahalya, is one of the oldest museums in India.  It was established in 1874 by F.S.Growse, the then Collector of Mathura district, as the Curzon Museum of Archeology.  The museum is particularly famous for sculptures from Sunga, Maurya, Kushana and Gupta periods. The museum contains about 33,500 art objects including 4819 stone sculptures, 2690 terracotta figures, 329 bronze idols, 312 miniature paintings and several gold and silver coins and other objects of historical and archeological value.  It has 18 galleries, including one dedicated to the Gandhara School of Art.



Maulana Abul Kalam Azad Institute of Asian Studies, Calcutta is the centre for research and training of the life and works of Maulana Abul Kalam Azad and for the study of the social, cultural, political and economic movement in Asia from the middle of the 19th century. The Institute functions under the administrative control of the Department of Culture. The Institute maintains a library of books, newspapers, still photographs and materials on the secular traditions of modern India and events of the 19th century. It organises workshops on Critical Asian Studies at Darjeeling for M.Phil/ Ph.D students.  



The Nadwatul-Ulema, Lucknow was formed in 1894 with the primary aim of providing education in religious and temporal sciences as well as offering technical training.  It also aimed at setting up a Centre of Study and Research on Islamic ideals and thought.  For most courses offered by the Nadwatul-Ulema, the medium of instruction is Arabic, although English, Urdu and Hindi are also used. It brings out an Arabic monthly called Al-Bathul Islami and two fortnightlies called Ar-Raid (Arabic) and Tamiri-I-Hayat (Urdu).



 The Namgyal Institute of Tibetology, Gangtok was built in 1958 by the last Chogyal (king) of Sikkim.  It has a faculty of eminent scholars, a library with a large collection of documents and rare books on Buddhism and an attached museum with a rare collection of antiques, coins and Tibetan paintings of thankas.



National Archives of India (NAI) is the premier organised record repository in Asia. Formerly known as 'Imperial Record Department', it was established on 11 March 1891as an attached office of the Department of Culture. It is the official custodian of all non-current records of permanent value of the Government of India and its predecessor bodies. It has four regional repositories at Bhopal, Bhubaneswar, Jaipur and Pondicherry.  National Archives of India is actively involved in accessioning of public records, preparation of reference media, evolving records management programmes, imparting training in the field of archives administration and records management and promoting archival consciousness in the country. It provides financial assistance to state archives, voluntary organisations and other custodial institutions. It also conducts one-year diploma course in archival studies and a number of short-term certificate courses.



The National Book Trust was established as an autonomous organisation in New Delhi in 1957.  Its primary objective is to encourage the production of good literature and make such works available at moderate prices to libraries, educational institutions and the public.   Its other activities are promotion of Indian books abroad, providing assistance to authors and publishers and promotion of children's literature.  The NBT organises the World Book Fair every alternate year.  It also participates in major international book fairs.



The National Centre for the Performing Arts (NCPA) was established in 1966 as a non-profit cultural organisation. The Centre is engaged in the preservation and promotion of India's rich cultural heritage in classical and folk music, dance and drama. It receives support from the Government of India and International bodies, such as the Ford Foundation and UNESCO. The Centre's aims and objectives are to (a) establish a national centre for the classical, traditional and contemporary arts and sciences of performance and communication,  (b) establish, equip and maintain schools, auditoria, libraries, archives, museums, studios and workshops,  (c) organise, sponsor, promote, establish, conduct and undertake scientific research, (d) disseminate knowledge, promote appreciation, provide training and sponsor research in these fields, (e) encourage and assist research scholars and teachers in the fields and (f) grant loans, scholarships, awards or other financial assistance.

The facilities available with the NCPA include a 1010-seat concert hall (Tata Theatre) used for concerts, dramas and international film festivals; a 250-seat experimental theatre (Tata Experimental Theatre), designed for experimental theatre productions; a 200-seat dance theatre (Godrej Dance Academy Theatre) for dance and music; a 114-seat Recording Studio-cum-auditorium for archival recordings of classical music (Little Theatre); Art gallery (Jehangir Nicholson Museum of Modern Art) for the display of paintings and related arts;  Photograph gallery ( Piramal Gallery of the Centre for Photography); Video Studio; Audio-Visual archival preservation vault with a collection of over 4,000 hours of audio and video recordings and a computerised database. It also has a Theatre Development Centre, Scientific Music Research Laboratory, Publication division (Marg Publications), Reference library ( N.M.Wadia Library of Music) and an  Opera Theatre.



India's first Prime Minister, Jawaharlal Nehru, took the initiative in 1955 to set up the Children Film Society, India (CFS) with Pandit H.N.Kunzru as its founder-chairman.  Some years ago the Children Film Society was renamed as the National Centre of Films for Children and Young People (NCYP). An autonomous body, the NCYP functions under the Information and Broadcasting Ministry of the Government of India. Its objectives are to advance education and culture through the medium of cinema, especially among children and adolescents; to create and develop an appreciation of films; and to undertake and coordinate the production of films for distribution and exhibition specially suited for children and adolescents in India and abroad. It also organises an International Children’s Film Festival every alternate year.  Its first production was Jaldeep (1956), followed by other films like Ganga Bhavani, Anmol Tasveer, Dak Ghar, Rikki Tikki Tavi and Kala Parvat. Presently, actress Jaya Bachchan is the Chairperson of NCYP.



The National Council of Educational Research and Training (NCERT), set up in 1961 as an autonomous body of the Ministry of Education of the Government of India, is an apex organisation in India for school education. NCERT implements the policies and programmes of the Ministry of Education. Its activities intertwine research, training and extension and span the entire spectrum of education from pre-school to the senior secondary stage. It functions through its eight constituent units, namely, the five Regional Institutes of Education located at Ajmer, Bhopal, Bhubaneswar, Mysore and Shillong, the National Institute of Education (NIE), New Delhi and the Central Institute of Educational Technology, New Delhi and the Pandit Sunderlal Sharma Central Institute of Vocational Education, Bhopal.  NCERT is a major publisher of school textbooks, monographs and journals. Every year it publishes about 300 titles covering textbooks, research reports/monographs and teachers' guides. It brings out six journals including Indian Educational Review, Indian Journal of Education, School Science and The Primary Teacher in English. The NCERT develops and produces kits such as Integrated Science Kit, Primary Science Kit and Mini Tool Kit. It also organises the National Talent Search (NTS) examinations and awards over 750 scholarships to children every year.

The National Institute of Education (NIE), New Delhi carries out research and development functions related to pedagogical aspect of curriculum, prepares prototype curricular and other supplementary instructional materials, develops school education related data base and conducts experimentation in pre-school, elementary and secondary stages to ensure all round development of the learner. The Central Institute of Educational Technology (CIET), located at the NCERT Headquarters, performs educational media related research, development, training, production and extension functions and provides academic and technical guidance and support to the State Institutes of Educational Technology.  Pandit Sunderlal Sharma Central Institute of Vocational Education (PSSCIVE), Bhopal organises research and development functions related to vocational education in the school sector.



The National Council of Science Museums (NCSM), Calcutta is an autonomous organisation under the Department of Culture. Its wide range of interactive programmes and activities are aimed at popularising science and technology amongst the students, in particular, and masses in general. The NCSM administers and manages 26 Science Museums/Centres/Parks throughout the country. The Council has set up nearly 300 school science centres in rural schools throughout the nation and has regional centres at Bhopal, Nagpur, Gwalior and Allahabad.



The National Gallery of Modern Art was inaugurated on March 29, 1954 at Jaipur House, near India Gate, New Delhi. The gallery is the only institution of its kind in India which is run and administered by the Government of India. It represents the evolution of the changing art forms since the middle of the 19th century.  The collection of the National Gallery of Modern Art essentially comprises painting, sculptures and graphics mainly by Indian and to some extent, international modern artists. In order to emphasise the historical development of modern Indian art, the collection focuses on the works of art of different schools and groups which were formed during the 19th century. The collection is well represented by the works of artists such as Thomas Daniell, Abindranath Tagore, Rabindranath Tagore, Gaganendranath Tagore, Nandlal Bose, Jamini Roy and Amrita Shergil. The collection also includes sculpture, graphics and paintings by international modern artists such as Jacob Epstein, Giorgio de Chirico, Peter Lubarda and Kozo Mio.



The National Film Archive of India (NFAI) was established in February 1964, as a media unit of the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting. Its objective is to acquire, preserve and restore the rich heritage of national cinema, and the cream of international cinema. The archive has made significant progress in the preservation of films, audio and video material, documentation, research and dissemination of film culture in India. The archive functions as the main repository for Indian and foreign research workers for viewing film classics, relating to their research projects. The Archives Distribution Library caters to over 300 Film Societies and Film Study Groups in educational institutions in the country. With its collection of over 15,000 films, the NFAI has been acknowledged as one of the major film archives in Asia.

NFAI is a member of the International Federation of Film Archives, since May 1969 which enables it to receive expert opinions and material on preservation techniques, documentation, bibliographies, etc and to exchange rare films with other such archives under the archival exchange programme. The Archive maintains a distribution library of 16 mm films (Indian and foreign), which are loaned to film societies and others for non-commercial study screenings. NFAI in collaboration with FTII conducts an Annual Film Appreciation Course. Film buffs, teachers, researchers, students and journalists join this course to learn about cinema and its vital cultural role.

With its headquarters at Pune, NFAI has at present three regional offices at Bangalore, Calcutta and Thiruvananthapuram.



Set up in 1980, the National Film Development Corporation (NFDC) is the canalising agency for the export of Indian films. The prime objective of NFDC is to plan, promote and organise the integrated development of the Indian film industry.  It is also a premier financer of good cinema.  It has co-produced several good movies like Kumar Shahani’s Kaasba and Mira Nair’s Salam Bombay. It was only after the government set up the Film Finance Corporation (FFC, which in 1980 came to be known as NFDC) that several small but serious film makers got the wherewithal to make films, notable among them being Mani Kaul, Kumar Shahani and GV Iyer (with his maiden venture in Sanskrit, Adi Sankaracharya). The Corporation also partnered the making of Attenborough's Gandhi and financed Satyajit Ray's Ghare Baire that was to be one of the last films of the master. The two international co-productions recently completed are Making of a Mahatma a joint venture between NFDC and the South African Broadcasting Corporation and Jaya Ganga an Indo-French venture.

NFDC produces, co-produces and finances films and has also initiated a Theatre Financing scheme in 1979. NFDC is the single largest exporter of Indian feature film. NFDC markets films of private producers internationally on commission basis. NFDC imports good commercial films and distributes them in India. It rents out equipment like video, 16mm camera, 35 mm cameras and other cinematic equipments. Technical services like telecine, video duplication, editing and nonlinear editing Beta AB roll etc. are also provided. NFDC also undertakes turnkey installation and commissioning of equipment in studios. Laser film subtitling and Video subtitling is done in many Indian and foreign languages. Maya--the Magic Shop is a dedicated computer graphics and special effects production facility set up by NFDC. NFDC programmes and markets feature films, serials and other programmes on Doordarshan, India's national television network.

To fight video piracy, NFDC, in collaboration with the Indian film industry has set up an anti-piracy body, Indian Federation Against Copyright Theft (INFACT), which is registered as a company under the Companies Act.

In July 2000, the Government of India nominated Hema Malini to be the first-ever woman chairperson of the National Film Development Corporation (NFDC).  The NFDC has been without a formal board and chairperson since well known Telugu film-maker DVS Raju resigned in 1993.



National Library, Calcutta serves as a permanent repository of all readings and information material produced in India as well as printed material written by Indians and concerning India written by foreigners, wherever published and in whatever language. Under the Delivery of Books Act, 1954 the National Library is entitled to receive one copy of each publication published in the country. It is also a repository of the United Nations publications. It renders multi-faceted services and extends different types of bibliographical assistance to numerous readers and scholars, ministries and national and international organisations. Over 30 lakh books, besides periodicals, maps, manuscripts, newspapers and microfilms totaling several million items are housed in the Library. Invaluable and prestigious personal collections like the Asutosh Collection, Jadunath Sarkar Collection, Buhar Collection and some others are also in its possession.



The National Museum of India was established on August 15, 1949, in the Durbar Hall of Rashtrapati Bhawan, New Delhi. Its main activities are in the field of acquisition, exhibition, conservation, education and publication of art objects. On December 18, 1960, the sizeable collection was transferred to the present premises and the works of art were thrown open to the public. There are 26 permanent galleries in the Museum including the galleries on Buddhist Art, Tantra Art, Decorative Arts, Evolution of Indian scripts and coins, Tanjore and Mysore School Paintings and Jewellery Gallery. The Buddhist art gallery, which has 84 select exhibits including the highly revered sacred relics of Buddha (5th century BC) excavated from Piprawaha, Basti district of Uttar Pradesh, thankas, Kapardina Buddha from Ahicchhatra, Buddha's foot-prints from Nagarjunakonda and scenes from his life from Sarnath. The Tantra Art gallery displays 135 magnificent products of Tantric art from various parts of the country, Nepal, Bhutan and Tibet including the famous Shri Ajit Mokerjee collection. The National Museum Library has over 48,000 books on ancient and medieval history, archaeology, fine arts and anthropology. The Museum provides access to the reserve collection and library to museum professionals, scholars and general public.  The National Museum Institute of History of Art, Conservation and Museology was set up as a Deemed University in 1989.



The National Museum Institute of History of Art, Conservation and Museology, New Delhi is a  "Deemed University" which has been functional since 1989. Its main thrust is acquisition of teaching aids and software, setting up a slide studio, preparation of syllabus oriented video films, awarding Fellowships and Scholarships and conducting seminars and symposia.  The Institute conducts M.A. and Ph.D. courses in three disciplines History of Art Conservation and Restoration of works of Art, Museology and Indian Art & Culture. The Institute also conducts Diploma/Certificate courses in areas like Museum Administration and Art Application.



The National Research Laboratory for Conservation of Cultural Property (NRLC), Lucknow is a subordinate office of the Department of Culture. It is a scientific institution engaged in the conservation of cultural heritage of the country.   It conducts research in materials and methods of conservation, provides training in conservation and provides technical advice and assistance to museums and allied institutions. It has a well-developed library, which provides documentation services like abstracting to other institutions.  Every year the laboratory conducts an orientation workshop for Directors and Curators on preventive conservation and a six-month training course for conservators. A regional centre of NRLC for the southern region is functioning at Mysore since 1987.



The National School of Drama (NSD) is one of the foremost theatre training institutions in the world, set up by Sangeet Natak Akademi in 1959. In 1975, it became an autonomous organisation, financed entirely by Department of Culture.  Several eminent actors, directors, script-writers, designers and technicians of theatre, films and television are the products of NSD. In NSD the students are exposed to a systematic and practical performing experience of Sanskrit drama, modern Indian drama, traditional Indian theatre forms, Asian drama and western drama. Experts in each of these fields interact with the students to broaden their horizons of talent. The students also go to different regional centres to gain a first hand experience of the traditional theatre forms. The School has a Repertory Company and Theatre-In-Education Company in Delhi and a Regional Resource-cum-Research Centre at Bangalore.



The Nava Nalanda Mahavihara, Nalanda, Bihar, is an Institute for postgraduate teaching and research in Pali language, Literature and Buddhist Studies, functioning under the Department of Culture since February 1994.  The Institute conducts different Post-graduate and Diploma courses like Post Graduation in Pali , Philosophy, Ancient Indian and Asian Studies and  Diploma in Pali, Japanese, Chinese and  Hindi, besides  Ph. D and  D. Litt.



Nrityagram, located in Bangalore, is India’s first and only dance village set up exclusively for the preservation of the seven classical Indian dance styles and two martial art forms of India. Founded by Protima Gauri in 1990 and designed by Gerard da Cunha, the Nrityagram has a rich traditional architectural style. Nityagram incorporates the Guru-Shishya Parampara style of teaching in which the students live together in the community and devote themselves to perfecting their dance training over a number of years. Each Gurukul takes a maximum of six residential students. Nrityagram offers training to its residential students for a period of 6-7 years, in which time they will be trained to become leading professional dancers and teachers. Regular workshops are conducted in creative modern dance, Yoga, mime, Kalaripayyatu, meditation, Aikido, sculpture and Shorinji Kempo. Leading teachers and performing artists come regularly for intensive workshops in classical dance. Each student is taught to conduct lecture demonstrations, to teach dance and to perform professionally. The students of Odissi and Mohiniattam have over a hundred performances in India to their credit and have received favourable reviews everywhere. Several of Nrityagram’s Odissi soloists like Surupa Sen and Bijayini Satpathy are now performing independently.  As part of their policy to take classical culture back to Village India, Nrityagram hosts the annual Vasanthahabba (Spring Festival) in February, which attracts thousands of people.  

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