The Bhandarkar Oriental Research Institute (BORI) which houses one of South Asia’s largest collection of rare manuscripts recently launched an e-library of ancient religious and historical works. A 19-volume edition of The Mahabharata and legendary Sanskrit scholar P.V. Kane’s five-volume History of Dharmashastra (1930) are among some of the most noted collections of the e-library.
Owing most of their rare treasures to personal collections, the website states, “The library was founded with a valuable personal collection of about 2200 books donated by Sir Ramakrishna Gopal Bhandarkar himself. Stalwarts of the likes of P. K. Gode, A. D. Pusalkar, S. V. Sohoni, R. N. Dandekar, P. V. Bapat and P. L. Vaidya have donated their personal collections to the library. Volumes of esteemed national and international journals are procured in exchange with the Annals.
Today around 2,500 scholars and students visit the institute per year seeking references for their graduate, postgraduate, doctoral and post-doctoral research projects.
The BORI Library, recently named after the legendary Dr. R. N. Dandekar, is internationally recognised as a specialised library in the field of Orientology. It is a home to above 1,25,000 handpicked books pertaining to all the aspects of Oriental Studies. About 20,000 of the books are quite rare to find the world over. Books in over 25 Indian and European languages are housed here. Prominent languages among them are Sanskrit, Pali, different Prakrits, Hindi, Marathi, English, French, and German among others.