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Bhaktivedanta Research Centre Library, Kolkata


Origin

The Bhaktivedanta Research Center was started in 2008 and the library was started shortly thereafter. Its an ISKCON (International Society for Krishna Conciousness) project.

ISKCON also known colloquially as the Hare Krishna Movement is a Gaudiya Vaishnava religious organization. It was founded in 1965 in New York by A C Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada. Its philosophy is based on Hindu Scriptures, mainly Srimad Bhagavatam and the Bhagavad-Gita.

The Bhaktivedanta Research Centre is a project of ISKCON in Kolkata. It is one of the many projects by the organization. The objective of BRC is to collect, preserve and disseminate literature on Vaishnivism and related domains of knowledge.

Building

The library is located on the 2nd floor of the Bhaktivedanta Research Centre Building. The library has a spacious hall that has been partioned into different functional units. On entering on the right is the Circulation-cum-Librarian's Desk and on the left is a row of computers with internet access and a scanner where scanning of manuscripts is continously going on. From the circulation desk you pass on to the book stacks on both sides with big table with chairs in the centre for readers.

The proud possession of the library is a wooden almirah with glass windows with a collection of manuscripts in different physical media all packed in red clothes to protect them form moisture.

Location

Kolkata (formerly Calcutta) is the capital of West Bengal state of India. It is located on the east bank of Hoogly river and is one of the four metro cities of India. It is a main commercial, cultural and educational centre of East India. The port of Kolkata is the India's oldest operating port. It is located at a distance of about 1480 Kms from the national capital New Delhi.

The Bhaktivedanta Research Centre is located on the Motilal Nehru road. You can get here from the Sarat Bose Road. If coming by bus get down at the Ramakrishna Mission Shshu Mangal Hospital bus stop, it is nearby.

Staff

Administrative Positions:

The library has following posts:
Sr.No.DesignationNo. of Posts
1Director1
2Academic Director1
3Accountant1

Library Staff:

The library has following posts:
Sr.No.DesignationNo. of Posts
1LibrarianAcyuta Dasa
3Librarian (Bengali Section)1
3Professinal Assistant (Reprographics)1

Also some devottees volunteer for spedific tasks for BRC and library from time to time.

Collection

The library is a research center and is well equipped with many rare and valuable manuscripts on and about Vaishnavism and allied subjects. It has rich collection of 15,000+ books and is developing into a valuable resource center for researchers on Hindu Religion and Philosophy.

The library is acquiring a very rare collection of books. Many manuscripts make part of the collection. These kind of resources can't be found in book shops etc. So, the library mainly identifies the persons who are in possession of such resources and approaches them with a requrest for contributing their valuable collection to the library so that more and more people can make use of them. Special teams from the library visit different regions to convince owners of valuable collections to contribute for the library.

The library also has a collection of more than 1300 journals in different languages, including Sanskrit and Bengali and more than 500 manuscripts. A great part of the collection is from individual donors.

Membership

The library is a reference library and it doesn't offer regular membership. However, those who approach with some specific information needs are allowed and helped by the library staff with all the resources available. Such users are provided access to the rare resources under the supervision of the library staff. A comfortable and peacefull environment is maintained for the visiting readers. Internet facility is available for library users. The library OPAC can be searched at http://library.brcindia.com. The library will also be making available scanned copies of its rare collections in digital format.

Information Technology

The library is equipped with a server with Koha ILS and many PC nodes for public and staff use. The library is making use of a state of the art scanning technology from Germany for converting its rare and fragile collection into digital format. The aim is to provide them online for users. This will make them easy to access and also make sure the original documents (which have already deteriorated over time and need special care) are safe.

Working Hours

The library provides its services from 10 am to 4 pm Monday to Friday. It remains closed on all public holidays.

Contact

Bhaktivedanta Research Centre Library, 2nd Floor,
110A, Motilal Nehru Road,
Kolkata (WB)-700029.
INDIA.
Phone: +91 33 4065 6198
E-mail: ISKCONbrc@gmail.com
Website: www.brcindia.com
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