The Asha Archives

An Introduction

Objectives

The Board of Trustees

Endowment

An Introduction

The Asha Archives is a public library of Nepalese manuscripts, named after the late Mr. Asha Man Singh Kansakar was a prominent activist, social worker, educationist and Newar writer who had founded several social, cultural, literary and educational institutions. The nucleus of this collection was donated by Prem Bahadur Kansakar to Cwasa Pasa, a premier literary association of Newar writers on August 16, 1985. To this personal collection were later added the donations of valuable manuscripts and palmleaf documents by several well-wishers and friends. Among them mention should be made of Mr. Ian Alsop, an American student of Kansakar, Dharma Ratna Bajracharya, Gurushekhar Upadhyaya, Reverend Shucho Takaoka, Gyan Ratna, and Dr. Kamal Prakash Malla. Similarly, more than a dozen other donors have helped this archives with gifts of their personal collection of manuscripts.

The Asha Archives was inaugurated by Professor Yujiro Hayashi, the executive director of the Toyota Foundation, Japan on December 7, 1987. It was made accessible for the public since that day. The Toyota Foundation had made a generous grant to purchase, innovate and furnish the house where it is now located. The foundation had also supported the documentation of the manuscripts and the initial operation of the Archives with a fund deposited as seed money and endowment.

The Asha Archives is located in the western edge of the old Kathmandu city, in a locality known as Kulanbhulu.

 

Objectives

After decades of personal and singular efforts to stop the export of Nepalese manuscripts abroad, the Asha Archives was founded with the noble objective of collecting manuscripts and making them available for scholars and researchers in Nepal and abroad. The main objectives of the Archives are:

1. To collect valuable Nepalese manuscripts in Nepal through public efforts;

2. To preserve such manuscripts as are of value and relevance for studies in Nepal's heritage;

3. To document such manuscripts in the form of accessible catalogues, and

4. To make them available to researchers and scholars for study, research and publication through various form of reproduction.

 

The Board of Trustees

The management of the Archives is looked after by a 16 member Board of Trustees chaired by Mr. Padma Ratna Tuladhar. It meets once or twice a year to approve the annual budget, programme and other policies. The day-to-day operations are overseen by a standing comittee consisting of the Chairman, Treasurer, Librarian, Representative of Cwasa Pasa and the selected members of the Board of Trustees.

 

Endowment

The Archives is financially supported by the interests earned from an endowment fund deposited in the Nepalese banks and other fees and donations. Its accounts are annually audited by a government registered auditor nominated by the Board of Trustees.
 
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