• Why in News-  
    • Genealogy priest like Panda, one of about 2,500 genealogy priests in Haridwar are holding records of families going back 15 to 20 generations, with details such as place of origin, names, births, deaths, reason of death, place of residence, grants made to temples, caste and clan.  
  • Put to wider use Now, the Indian Council of Historical Research (ICHR) is looking to tap them to fill “gaps” in Indian history. 
  • The ICHR, which has embarked on a mission to tell history from a people’s perspective, plans to help make these records available to researchers, scholars, and historians. 
  • Historians say the records can be a rich source to understand past famines, epidemics, migration, movement of people, as well as social history on

how clans and communities were organised. 

  • While individual scholars have accessed these records for research before, now the ICHR will systemise the process. 
  • For example, the Haridwar records are written in a local script called “Landi­Mundi”, and they will develop a mechanism for translating these.  
  • The priests have organised themselves into so called ‘fims’ based on States, districts, and villages they handle. 
  • One firm for example has records from Bengal, Assam, Madhya Pradesh, Jammu, Himachal Pradesh, and Punjab, stretching up to Multan and Gujranwala in Pakistan. 
  • Apart from Haridwar, such records are available in other Hindu religious centres such as Ujjain, Nasik, Gaya, Gangotri, and Rameshwaram. 
  • Then there are places such as Pehowa in Haryana where people go to register unnatural deaths due to an accident, suicide or murder. 


  • The Indian Council of Historical Research (ICHR) is an autonomous organization under the Ministry of Education, Government of India.
  • It was established in 1972.
  • ICHR was registered under the Societies Registration Act ( of 1860).
  • The primary aim and objective of the Indian Council of Historical Research are to promote and give directions to historical research and to encourage and foster objective and scientific writing of history.
    • To review the progress of historical research from time to time.
  • To provide fellowships and financial assistance to young teachers in colleges, universities and registered research organizations,

To publish a biannual Journal – the Indian Historical Review, and another journal Itihas in Hindi.