300-yr-old library reopens in Aurangabad | india | Hindustan Times
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300-yr-old library reopens in Aurangabad

india Updated: Mar 23, 2008 17:25 IST
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An ancient library dating back to 300 years, was reopened after a gap of 40 years at the historical monument Water Mill in Aurangabad, sources said.

The library housing manuscripts and other precious and rare books like the Holy Quran written by the last Mughal emperor Aurangzeb Alamgir, was thrown open recently to the public.

The library, at the 18th century site, once the biggest in Asia, was restarted with the efforts of top officials Maharashtra Wakf Board.

According to the sources, Hazrat Babashah Musafir who migrated to Aurangabad in 18th century from Bukhara in Russia founded the library as well as the Water Mill.

The library had around one lakh pieces till Independence. In 70s it was shut down due to administrative reasons, following which many of the library books were shifted to Hyderabad.

Currently, the library houses 3,500 books on various fields including history, law, medicine, Sufism, religion and philosophy in Arabic, penned by philosophers, saints and scholars in Urdu and Persian languages.

The cover of Holy Quran here has a coating of gold on both sides, which has been preserved till date. A holy book written in 1283 in four languages is also available.

The librarian Hafiz Abdul Jaleel said Babashah Musafir founded the library with the main objective of spreading the knowledge.

"The library was considered to be the largest one in Asia during that time. Now, it has around 3,500 rare books. After reopening the library, many students specially those who are engaged in research are thronging it. There is no entry fee," he added.