Document of the month:
The Mumbai Raj Bhavan, formerly known as Government House, has been the seat of power since 1665 A.D. when Sir Humphrey Cooke took charge of the Bombay Island from the Portuguese as the First English Governor in the erstwhile Bombay Presidency under the English East India Company. The Last British Governor of Bombay was Sir John Colville, who served up to 5th January 1948.
It was in the Raj Bhavan precincts that the State of Samyukta Maharashtra was formally inaugurated by Prime Minister Pt Jawaharlal Nehru in presence of the first Governor of Samyukta Maharashtra Shri. Sri Prakasa and the first Chief Minister Shri. Yashwantrao Chavan. ‘Raj Bhavan’, now the office and residence of the Governor of Maharashtra, the Constitutional Head of the State, has played a significant role in the affairs of the State since then.
An “Archives Cell” has been set up in Raj Bhavan where documents of historic importance are being classified and indexed. It is proposed to preserve these records through digitization and microfilming. These records will be accessible to students, researchers, members of the academia and interested citizens from September 2012.
An Advisory Committee under the Chairmanship of renowned historian and archivist Shri Sadashiv Gorakshkar has been advising the Governor’s office in developing the Archives Cell. The other eminent members of the Committee are Prof. Mushirul Hasan, Director, National Archives of India, Smt. Vrunda Pathare, Chief Archivist, Godrej Archives, Dr. Smt Varsha Shirgaonkar, Head, Department of History, SNDT Women’s University and Shri Ashok Kapoor, Retired Chief Archivist, Reserve Bank of India Archives.
Till date, 5000 files comprising more than 1 lakh documents dating back to 1930 have been classified and indexed. The work of classification and indexing is in process and few more files will be added to the collection. The files relate to a wide variety of subjects including the Constitutional functions of the Governor, visits of important dignitaries to the State of Maharashtra, various institutions headed and patronized by the Governor, speeches of various Governors, administrative matters and other contemporary issues etc.
Old and rare photographs of past Governors are also being collected, preserved and digitized.
A catalog of the various documents with index and subject classification is available in the Raj Bhavan Archives for the use of researchers. Click on the link to view the catalogue.
The Raj Bhavan Archives can be accessed by students pursuing graduation, post-graduation and Ph.D. They will have to submit a letter from the head of their respective departments / institutions.
Historians, members of the academia, interested citizens and employees of the State and Central Governments can also access the records in the Raj Bhavan Archives.
Access will be permitted from 10.30 AM to 4.30 PM on all working days (Monday to Saturday, except second and fourth Saturday) by prior appointment. Appointment can be scheduled by sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org, preferably 3 days before the requested date. The appointment will be confirmed through e-mail.
Copies of the reference material (photo copy/soft copy) will be made available on written request and on payment of charges.
Even though India became Independent on 15th August 1947, the country was still to decide its official National Anthem to be sung on the day of Independence. ‘Jana Gana Mana’ was adopted by the Constituent Assembly of India as Indian National Anthem much later on 24th January 1950.
A few days ahead of the Independence Day, District Collectors in the Old Bombay State wrote to the State Chief Secretary seeking directions on whether they should still sing the ‘God Save the King’ as National Anthem on 15th January 1947.
In response to these queries, the Chief Secretary of the Government of Bombay had issued an order to all Collectorates on 11th August 1947 informing that “God Save the King” should not be played or sung on the 15th August and that there would be no objection to ‘Vande Mataram’ being played or sung ‘if so desired’. The Circular further stated that Orders regarding the new national anthem will be issued in due course.
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Secretary to the Governor
Mumbai- 400 035
Phone: 022- 2363 2343/ 2369 4799/ 2369 2426