New Delhi: Over Rs.15.67 crore have been released this year for upgradation and maintenance of rare manuscripts at 98 resource and conservation centres across the country, the culture ministry said Tuesday.
The funds released by the culture ministry would be used by 54 manuscript resource centres and 44 manuscript conservation centres.
The ministry said: "The funds released to manuscript resource centres amounted to Rs.10.9 crore, while the manuscript conservation centres received Rs.4.76 crore."
Karnataka received the largest share of the manuscript conservation funds at Rs.1.31 crore, followed by Kerala with Rs.83.25 lakh.
Bihar received Rs.73.38 lakh. The Khuda Baksh Oriental Public Library in Patna topped the list with Rs.24.17 lakh, the Kameswar Singh Darbhanga Sanskrit University got Rs.6.45 lakh and the Nava Nalanda Mahavihara got Rs.12.41 lakh, the ministry said.
The government turned the spotlight on the preservation and digitization of manuscripts in 2003 with the setting up of the National Mission for Manuscripts.
An estimate by the mission says the country possesses nearly five million manuscripts, the largest collection in the world.