Series 8 - Method of Science Exhibition

Identity area

Reference code



Method of Science Exhibition


  • 1975 - 2005 (Creation)

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Extent and medium

272 files

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Name of creator

(22/02/1928 – 01/08/2017)

Biographical history

Pushpa Mittra Bhargava (22 February 1928 – 1 August 2017) was an Indian scientist, writer, and administrator. He founded the Centre for Cellular and Molecular Biology, a federally funded research institute in Hyderabad. He was outspoken and highly influential in the promotion of scientific temper in India.

After completing his Ph.D. at Lucknow University, Bhargava moved to Hyderabad. From 1949 to 1958 he worked at Lucknow University, Osmania University, Hyderabad, the Central Laboratories for Scientific and Industrial Research, Hyderabad, the McArdle Memorial Laboratory of Cancer Research, University of Wisconsin-Madison, USA, and the National Institute of Medical Research in London, United Kingdom. In 1958, he joined the Central Laboratories for Scientific and Industrial Research which by then had been taken over by the Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) and named the Regional Research Laboratory (now known as the Indian Institute of Chemical Technology).

In 1977, Bhargava set up the Centre for Cellular and Molecular Biology (CCMB) and served as its Director until 1990. He retired from the directorship of CCMB to join the CSIR Distinguished Fellowship from 1990 to 1993. He ran his own consultancy, Anveshna, after 1993. During his career, he published more than 125 works in scientific journals and books.

Bhargava was deeply involved in discussions on Indian government policies. He served as Vice-Chairman of the National Knowledge Commission, as Chairman of the Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR) committee on DNA fingerprinting, and as a member of the first Scientific Advisory Council of the Department of Biotechnology. Bhargava was committed to promoting science and rationality and opposing superstition. He was closely involved with the Association of Scientific Workers of India (ASWI) which was established as a trade union of scientists. Bhargava received the Padma Bhushan from the President of India in 1986.

Archival history

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Scope and content

This large and significant series contains 272 files pertaining to the Method of Science Exhibition. In 1975, PM Bhargava was invited by the director of the National Council of Educational Research and Training (NCERT), Rais Ahmed, to set up an exhibition on the method of science. What followed was a decades-long endeavour to create and disseminate this exhibition and to give it a permanent home.

Although initially set up in Bal Bhavan, New Delhi, the exhibition was locked by Bhargava in 1977 following the general elections and a subsequent regime change both at the central government level and within the NCERT. In 1978, Bhargava discovered that the exhibition had been dismantled without his knowledge. After an investigation and a court dispute regarding this, the exhibition was eventually bought by the Andhra Pradesh government and installed at the Andhra Pradesh State Public Library. It was finally inaugurated on 12 November 1984, just a few days after the assassination of Indira Gandhi. In 1992 the exhibition was shifted to the Birla Science Centre, Hyderabad. In 2000, B Premanand, publisher and editor of ‘The Indian Skeptic’ wanted to bring the exhibition to Kerala but discovered that the material had been neglected and was unusable. Along the way, the exhibition had been documented by the Films Division and released in the late 1980s, and text from the exhibition serialized in the publication ‘Science Today’.

The records in this series are divided into 8 subseries based on the following record types: correspondence, accounts, official documents, exhibition materials, administration, articles writings and printed materials, compilations, and newspapers. Within each subseries, records are arranged thematically or chronologically, paying attention to the significant phases that this exhibition went through:

The initial conception and preparation period


Investigation and court case

Shifting of exhibition to Andhra Pradesh and subsequent inauguration

Shifting of exhibition to Birla Science Centre

Media and outreach initiatives

Involvement of B Premanand and proposed set up in Kerala

Appraisal, destruction and scheduling


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Language of material

  • English
  • French
  • Hindi
  • Telugu

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Shelf 1 Racks 3-5 and Shelf 2 Racks 1-4

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  • English


  • Latin


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