The Indian Council of Historical Research has introduced a new fellowship programme to promote the age-old guru-shishya (teacher-disciple) education system. According to the ICHR Gurukul-Fellowship, a disciple will be allocated to a senior historian for the former to understand the “nuances of historical research”.

The ICHR council has awarded the first fellowship to professor BB Lal, former director-general of the Archaeological Survey of India, and Ramachandran Nagaswamy (pictured above), former director of the department of archaeology in Tamil Nadu. While Lal was honoured by the government with the Padma Bhushan award in 2000, some of Nagaswamy’s articles have been translated into 23 languages and published in UNESCO’s journal. Both historians boast a huge body of work that includes books and research articles.

Under this two-year full-time fellowship programme, the historian will be entitled to a nominal monthly honorarium while the aspiring scholar will receive a monthly stipend, the same as one granted to ICHR’s post-doctoral fellows. Both the guru and disciple will also get a small amount of contingency grant every year. The terms and conditions that govern the grant of ICHR’s post-doctoral fellowships will also apply here.