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NCIC to open digital research centre

Published: 
Sunday, June 21, 2015
President of the National Council of Indian Culture Dr Deokienan,left, receives a book titled Cultural Persistence 50 years of the NCIC, from NCIC’s public relations officer, Surujdeo Mangaroo during Friday’s book launchat the NCIC nagar (formerly Divali Nagar). Photo: SHASTRI BOODAN

The National Council of Indian Culture (NCIC) will open a digital research centre by year’s end. According to president of the NCIC, Dr Deokienanan Sharma, it will likely become the most modern centre for Indian Diaspora studies and cultural and religious activities. Sharma was speaking at the launch of the organisation’s publication, entitled Cultural Persistence, which encapsulates its 50 years of existence as T&T and the Caribbean’s premier Indian cultural entity. 

“This centre will be digital in scope and it would be opened for scholars, writers and thinkers from across the globe to do their research and writings,” he said. “Additionally, we plead to the general public to lend us or share with us any such information relating to the Indian diaspora for use in the proposed centre.”

Sharma said the NCIC decided to record the struggles, triumph and vision for the development of the organisation so future generations could access reliable information and history. Dr Premnath Gooptar, author of Cultural Persistence said he was faced with several challenges, namely whether to cover the history by decades, by projects or other avenues. 

“In the end, we chose a mixture that suited our purpose. After the 1980s, the NCIC had dedicated and continues to dedicate a sizable portion of its resources to the preservation of its records. This augurs well for future history and for future projects of this kind for research by students of the Indian Diaspora or otherwise.”  

Gooptar said the volume of information also posed a challenge because they had to sift through thousands of photographs to select ones appropriate for the book 

Meanwhile, Prof Brinsley Samaroo, who spoke at the event, said Indian civilisation aims at the development of the spirit as opposed to other civilisations which are materialistic in nature. He said there were two groups of East Indians who came here between 1845 and 1917. The first group was traumatised by what was happening in their environment, while the other group was philosophic in their outlook as they were prepared to banish all fears and build a foundation for a good society.

Samaroo said the spirituality of the Indian mind has triumphed and that Indian civilisation progressed principally on these grounds, but never fought for any country or empire.

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