1947 Partition Archive releases University Access Points in India and Pakistan universities for researchers


BATHINDA: The 1947 Partition Archive, an organisation working into digging various details of partition of India by recording, compiling oral stories of the witnesses of partition, the largest displacement in South Asia, is launching University Access Points in India and Pakistan universities for researchers. The 5 universities have been selected for it, 3 in India and 2 in Pakistan for providing access to researchers to nearly 10,000 oral histories. The centres have been set up at University of Delhi, Ashoka University, Guru Nanak Dev University whereas the Archive is finding the funding partner for two universities in Pakistan, Lahore University of Management Sciences and Habib University.

In India, the Archive has partnered with Tata Trusts which will fund month long immersive research residency of researchers. The launch is being undertaken in 5 days online session started on June 7 and to continue till June 11. Another grant application round will open on June 13.

1947 Partition Archive is working to preserve the nearly lost oral history of 1947 and till now have documented over 9700 live stories of witnesses in over 750 towns, villages across 18 countries. It was founded by Berkeley (US) based researcher Guneeta Singh Bhalla in 2011. Her farther’ family had migrated from Lahore to Amritsar on August 14, 1947.


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Under its research grant initiative, the 17 researchers have been selected in India for providing access to its complete collection of oral histories.

“The Tata Trusts – Partition Archive Universities Access Program supports access for researchers at the three Indian Universities and two Pakistan Universities. In this pilot project, University Access Centres have been launched in collaboration with Ashoka University, Delhi University and Guru Nanak Dev University for safe access to its complete collection of over 9700 oral histories by academic researchers. Archive access through the program is being evaluated at each step of the way and its outcomes will determine the manner in which 1947 Partition Archive’s complete collections are made available more widely.

Competitive research grants are being offered as a part of the program and has been awarded to 17 research faculty and student recipients from across India. This program will be pivotal to developing responsible access strategies for conflict zone oral histories.

The 1947 Partition Archive has entered into similar collaborations with the Lahore University of Management Sciences and Habib University for pilot tests in Pakistan, once a funding partner is identified”, archive said in a statement on Thursday.

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