June 2024 \ Diaspora News \ Diaspora News

New Delhi: In alignment with Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s vision to strengthen diaspora connections and preserve shared heritage, the National Archives of India (NAI) said in May that it has, in collaboration with the Indian Embassy in Muscat, concluded its first-ever overseas digitisation project for the historical documents of the Indian diaspora in Oman.

Conducted from May 19-27, ‘The Oman Collection - Archival Heritage of the Indian Community in Oman’ saw participation from 32 prominent Gujarati families, reflecting their 250-year presence in Oman. The pioneering project digitized over 7,000 documents in English, Arabic, Gujarati, and Hindi, dating back to 1838 with the collection including diaries, account books, telegrams, trade invoices, passports, letters, and photographs, highlighting the Indian community’s cultural practices, social activities, trade, and integration into Omani society.

These documents will be available on NAI’s digital portal, ‘Abhilekh Patal,’ for public and researcher access. “This project is a historic milestone in preserving the heritage of the Indian diaspora,” noted Arun Singhal, Director General of NAI.

Supported by the National Records and Archives Authority (NRAA) of Oman, the initiative aims to deepen engagement with the Indian diaspora and promote appreciation of the longstanding India-Oman friendship, facilitating future research on the diaspora’s contributions.

India’s Ambassador Amit Narang emphasised that both countries share a rich tapestry of historical and cultural connections that go back 5,000 years. Oman is home to nearly 7,00,000 Indians and several merchant families mainly from Mandvi, Surat and other parts of Gujarat have been resident in Sur, Muttrah and Muscat since the late 18th century being an integral part of the Omani society.

Tags: Oman