One of the functions of the Institute of Sindhology has been to guide, assist and facilitate the local as well as foreign scholars in their research projects concerning various aspects of Sindh, particularly Sindhi language, literature, art, culture, history, anthropology, sociology, ethnology and ethnography of various ethnic groups of Sindh. For this purpose Research and reference library has been established by collecting and preserving the significant and important books, manuscripts and historical documents. It is one of the finest and the largest modern library in Pakistan with the most modern facilities available in our country. Efforts are being made to make it one of the best equipped and the best libraries on Sindh in the sub-continent.
This Research library consisting of two buildings: one is old wing and other is extension wing; old building has 2 large Air-conditioned halls for books/ manuscripts and a reading room, and the new double storeyed building (extension wing) has 3 large halls on ground floor and two small on first floor.
The Library has following Sections:-
1) Main Books Section
More than 90,000 books are available in this Section in Sindhi, Urdu, English, Punjabi, Siraiki, Balochi, Brahvi, Hindi, Arabic and Persian languages.
2) Book Corners
This library has vast collection of personal libraries of various prominent personalities. The collection has been displayed in the shape of Book Corners in the name of respective prominent personalities. The list of Book Corners is as under:
- Mr. Ghulam Raza Bhutto
- Kazi Abdul Khalique “Morai”
- Mr. Muhammad Ismail Ursani
3) RESEARCH LIBRARY
- Sheikh Abdul Majeed Sindhi
- Mr. Allah Bux Nizamani
- Mr. Hassan Ali Affendi
- Mr. Muhammad Hashim Gazdar
- Syed Panah Ali Shah
- Mr. Ghulam Ali Chagla
- Haji Mir Muhammad Bux Talpur
- Mr. Muzafar Hussain Soomro
- Prof. Mahboob Ali Channa
- Pir Saeed Hussain
- Mr. Rab Nawaz Shaikh
- Syded Dur Muhammad Shah
- Mr. Mathino Otho
- Pir Hussamuddin Shah Rashdi
- Syed Allah Jawayo Shah Jilani
- Khowaja Sultan Ali “Fedai”
- Mr. Muhammad Saleem Qureshi
- Mr. Muhammad Yousif Chandio
- Mr. Karim Bux Channa
- Dr. Dur Muhammad Pathan
- Hafiz Muhammad Ahsan Channa
- Hafiz Muhammad Yousif Dahlvi
- Mr. Muhmmad Khan Ghani
- Mr. Muhammad Usman Deeplai
- Mr. Abdul Hafeez “Hafeez” Shaikh
- Mr. Muhammad Bux Wasif
- Mr. Ishtiaque Hussain Khan Sherwani
- Mr. Mumtaz Ali Qureshi
- Makhdoom Muhammad Saleh Bhatti
- Khansahib Kamaluddin Abbasi
- Prof. Abdul Ali Qalbani
- Mr. Muhammad Saleh Butt
- Syed Shafkat Hussain Shah Moosvi
- Comrade Ghulam Muhammad Leghari
- Pir Muhammad Bughio
- Allama I.I. Kazi
- Dr. G. M. Mahkri
- Mr. Khair Muhammad “Azad” Jalbani
- Nawab Shahzado Khan Leghari
- Prof. Annemarie Schimmel
- Mr. Abdul Rahman Shoro
- Mr. Taj Sehrai
- Prof. Abdul Rehman Jatoi
- Comrade Taj Muahmmad Abro
The list of thesis has been prepared to facilitate the scholars, researchers as well as students for the purpose of study and references.
Maps are very useful for researchers due to their importance. Library has preserved 1028 maps. Some of them were sketched before partition of Indo-Pak. The oldest one is the map of Kakar Taluka of Shikarpur Collectorate, published in 1886 from Poona (India). List of maps has been prepared and it is available for the scholars.
5) Periodical Section
This section has vast collection of rare periodicals and newspapers as well as new periodicals/newspapers. The most important newspaper of Sindh during Pakistan movement is “Al-Waheed (1920-1950). It is preserved therein. The Institute of Sindhology has preserved daily newspapers and some old/rare newspapers are also preserved, some of them are:
- Sindh Kossid, 1854-57 (English)
- Muffroh-ul-Kuloob, 1877 (Persian)
- Sind Sudhar, 1878 (Sindhi)
- Daily Gazette, 1921-1931 (English)
Besides, this section has a vast collection of rare periodicals in Sindhi also, i.e. Rissala-e-Zarait (1900), Akhbar-e-Taleem (1901), Madrsah Monthly (1905), Sarswati (1906),Sindhu(1932-47),Nain-Zindagi Mehran (quarterly), monthly Rooh Rehan, monthly Agte Qadem,etc; in English: Journal of Sindh Historical Society, Asiatic Research, Calcutta Review and many more are preserved therein. Catalogue of Sindhi periodicals is published.
Manuscripts are the most important material for any Library. The Research library has 1684 manuscripts in Arabic, Persian, Sindhi and English languages. Some very important MSS are as under:-
- Dalla-ul-Khairat (written in golden ink)
- A Holy Quran- 650 years old in Kufi Script
- Nasabnamah Aaima Mausoomah.
- Makhdoom Muhammad Hashim Thattvi on Fikah.
- Mukhdoom Abdul Wahid Sewistani’s “Biyaz Wahdi”
7) Subject-wise list of manuscripts is as under:-
- Various documents of British Period
The descriptive catalogue of MSS is published.
8) Archival Material
Library has vast collection of Government documents, such as:
- Assembly Debates
- Census Reports
- Linguistic survey
- Various enquiry Reports
- Sindh Gazetteers/ Distt. Gazetteers
- Social work
- Year books
Due to its importance the list has been bifurcated in two portions: one is before partition of India and other is after partition published by the Government of Pakistan.
9) Preservation and Conservation Section
It is a cell for preservation and restoration of rare documents and rare material. This cell has a laboratory for testing and dating of paper and equipped with modern machinery and equipments, such as:
- Bench-top Deacidification Unit
- Vacuum Fumigation Chamber
- Conservation Table
- Vacuum Dry Mounting ( Lamination) Press
- Guarding and Filling Frame
This section has preserved rare documents through two methods i.e. traditional or waits repair method (Preservation with French Chiffon silk) and other is dry mounting/ lamination with various coated tissues such as: Crompton coated tissue, lamitic tissue and area bonded fiber.
This section has preserved more than 300 books/ manuscripts and newspapers, some of them are:
- Sind Kossid Newspaper (1854) in English
- Sind Sudhar Newspaper (1878) in Sindhi
- Muffrah-ul-Kuloob Newspaper (1877) in Persian
- N. M. Billimoria’s letters and Documents of Sindh
- Historical Society.
- Catalogue of the coins (Moin-jo-Daro)
- Maps of Sindh
- Letters and case report of K.B. Muhammad Ayoub
- Shah-Jo-Risalo (Manuscript)
- District Gazetteers of Sindh
- Selection from the pre-mutiny records of Commissioner
- in Sind ,1847.
- Holy Quran (Manuscript) which was in the personal use
- of Shah Abdul Latif Bhittai. It was preserved on the
- instructions of the then Prime Minister of Pakistan , now a days the same has been displayed at the shrine of Shah Abdul Latif Bhittai.
10) Binding Section
Binding of every book which is accessed in library has been done by its well equipped binding section as well as binding of newspapers and periodicals.
11) Microfilm Section
This Library has the facilities of microfilming unit with two microfilm readers and one microfiche camera, processors and reader-printer. This section is preserving various newspapers and rare books by making their microfilms. The readers are facilitated to get their required information from it. Also this section has made a exchange programme with other learned bodies and libraries for exchanging the microfilms.