Government of Nepal

Ministry of Culture, Tourism and Civil Aviation

Department of Archaeology

National Archives

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Archives Preservation Act 1989

 

The Archives Preservation Act, 2046 (1989) An Act to make Provisions Relating to the Preservation of Archives
Preamble:
Whereas it is expedient to make provisions relating to the preservation of the documents of national importance in the form of archives in a systematic way.
Now, therefore, his Majesty King Birendra Bir Bikram Shah Dev has made this Act on the advice and with consent of the National Panchayat.
1.    Short Title and Commencement:
1.1    This Act shall be called “Archives Preservation Act, 2046 (1989)”
1.2    It shall come into force at once.
2.    Definitions:
2.1    Unless the subject or context otherwise requires, in this Act,-
2.1.1    “Documents” include the following matters:-
2.1.1.1    Hand-written manuscript, book, report, financial statement, treaty and agreement, newspaper and magazine, letter, deed, drawing, photo, map, plan, chart, file, case file, register or any publication.
2.1.1.2    Original or duplicate of film, microfilm, tape (sound recorder), movie, computer disk or computer cassette.
2.1.1.3    Original or photo of tadpatra (document written on the leaf of bark of palmyra tree), bhojpatra (document written on the bark of birch tree), golden inscription, copper inscription or petrography.
2.1.1.4    The postage stamp with first cancellation mark and new publication of money-order form, aerogramme and post card.
2.1.2    “Archives” means the Documents preserved in National Archives in the form of archives and the documents registered pursuant to sub-section 5.1.1.
2.1.3    “National Archives” means National Archives established pursuant to Section 3.
2.1.4    “Office” means the Ministry and Department of Government of Nepal and it includes the office of the constitutional bodies and temporary or periodic commission constituted by Government of Nepal from time to time.
2.1.5    “Committee” means the advisory committee constituted pursuant to Section 4.
2.1.6    “Prescribed” or “As prescribed” means prescribed or as prescribed in the Rules made under this Act.
3.    Establishment of National Archives:
3.1    There shall be a National Archives for the preservation of Archives in a systematic way.
3.2    The National Archives established prior to the commencement of this Act shall be deemed to have been established under this Act.
4.    Constitution of Advisory Committee:
4.1    Government of Nepal may constitute an advisory committee to provide necessary advice to the National Archives for the preservation of Archives in a systematic way.
4.2    The functions, duties and rights and other procedures of the meeting of the committee shall be as prescribed.

5.    Function, Duties and Rights of the National Archives:
5.1    Functions, Duties and Rights of the National Archives shall be as follows:-
5.1.1    To register the Documents received pursuant to Section 6 and 7,
5.1.2    To keep the Archives in a safe and systematic way,
5.1.3    To classify the Archives as prescribed and prepare the list thereof.
5.1.4    To duplicate or re-print the Archives as required,
5.1.5    To make necessary arrangement relating to reading or copying or providing duplicate of the Archives to any person,
5.1.6    To provide necessary advice to the Office relating to the preservation of the documents,
5.1.7    The other functions, duties and rights of the National Archives shall be as prescribed.

6.    Transfer of Documents to the National Archives by the Office:
6.1    The Office shall transfer the following documents to the National Archives for preservation:-
6.1.1    Twenty five or more than twenty five years old documents of national importance as mentioned in sub-section 2.1.1.1 and 2.1.1.2,
6.1.2    Postage stamp with first cancellation mark and new publication of money order form, aerogramme and post card.
6.2    The Office may transfer the following documents to the National Archives for preservation with or without specifying the time period in case it deems necessary to preserve them in the form of Archives with a national view:-
6.2.1    Report, financial statement, treaty and agreement or any publication,
6.2.2    Hand-written manuscript, book, newspaper and magazine, letter, document, drawing, photo,
6.2.3    Map, plan, chart, file, case file or register, film,
6.2.4    Original or duplicate of film, microfilm, tape (sound recorder), movie or computer disk or computer cassette,
6.2.5    Documents other than those mentioned in sub-section 6.2.1, 6.2.2, 6.2.3 or 6.2.4.
6.3    While disposing the official Documents in accordance with the prevailing law relating to the disposition of official Documents, the Office shall transfer the prescribed Documents to the National Archives.
6.4    While transferring the Documents to the National Archives, the Office shall also transfer the classified list thereof.
6.5    While transferring the Documents to the National Archives pursuant to sub-section 6.1 or 6.2., in case reading, copying and taking the duplicate of such documents by the person other than the prescribed person is to be prohibited for certain period of time, the Office shall transfer the Documents to the National Archives mentioning such condition and time period as well.
6.6    The Office can not take back the Documents transferred to the National Archives pursuant to sub-section 6.1.

Provided that the concerned Office, if it desires, can take back as prescribed the Documents which have been transferred by mentioning time period among the Documents transferred to the National Archives pursuant to sub-section 6.2 on the expiry of such time period.
6.7    In case the Documents which have been transferred to the National Archives by the Office pursuant to sub-section 6.1 are required by the same Office, the National Archives may provide such Documents to the concerned Office as prescribed for a prescribed period of time on the conditions that such Documents are to be returned to the National Archives.

7.    Documents may be Transferred to the National Archives:
7.1    Any person, who has any Documents having national importance with a historical, religious, cultural, literary, financial or any other view, may transfer such Documents to the National Archives for preservation in the form of national property.
7.2    The person who has transferred the Documents to the National Archives pursuant to sub-section 7.1 is not entitled to take back the Documents from the National Archives.

8.    Documents to be Preserved in a Systematic way:
8.1    The Office shall preserve the Documents of its Office in a systematic way.
8.2    The concerned Office may take necessary advice with the National Archives for the preservation of the Documents in a systematic way pursuant to sub-section 8.1.

9.    Prohibited Archives:
9.1    The following Archives shall be regarded as Prohibited Archives:-
9.1.1    The Documents which have been transferred by the concerned office to the National Archives for preservation with or without specifying the time period and prohibiting the regarding, copying and taking the duplicate of such Documents by a person other than the prescribed person.
9.1.2    The Documents prescribed as prohibited by the National Archives with a national view with or without specifying the time period and prohibiting the reading, copying and taking the duplicate of such Documents by a person other than the prescribed person.

10.    Permission may be Granted for Reading or Taking the Duplicate of the Archives:
10.1    If any person desires to read the Archives other than the prohibited Archives, the National Archives may provide Archives for reading as prescribed.
10.2    If any person desires to copy or to take duplicate of the Archives other than the prohibited Archives, the National Archives may provide such Archives for copying or giving a duplicate of it as prescribed by charging the fees as prescribed.
10.3    Notwithstanding anything contained in sub-section 10.2, such Archives may be provided for copying or its duplicate may be given without charging the fees in the prescribed condition.
11.    No Alteration to be Made:
11.1    The official of the National Archives having responsibility to preserve the Archives shall not make any alteration in such Archives or tear out or destroy such Archives in any way.
11.2    The person who is permitted to read, copy or take the duplicate of the Archives or any other person shall not make any alteration in such Archives or tear out or destroy such Archives in any way.

12.    Penalty:
12.1    In case the official of the National Archives having responsibility to preserve the Archives provides the prohibited Archives present to Section 9 to the person other than the prescribed person, he shall be punished with a fine upto five thousand rupees or imprisonment which may extend upto three years or both.
12.2    In case the official of the National Archives having responsibility to preserve the Archives makes any alteration in the Archives or tears out or destroys the Archives in contravention of sub-section 11.1, he shall be punished with a fine upto five thousand rupees or imprisonment which may extend upto two years or both.
12.3    In case any person other than the official of the National Archives having responsibility to preserve the Archives makes any alteration in the Archives or tears out or destroys the Archives in contravention of sub-section 11.2, he shall be punished with a fine upto three thousand rupees or imprisonment which may extend upto one year or both.
12.4    In case any person does any thing other than those mentioned in sub-section 12.1, 12.2 and 12.3 in contravention to this Act or Rule made there-under, he shall be punished with a fine upto five thousand  rupees.

13.    Proceedings may be Carried out in Accordance with the other Prevailing Laws:
Any one who has done any activity which may be regarded as an offence under this Act and if such activity is to be regarded as an offence according to the other prevailing laws as well, nothing mentioned in this Act shall be regarded to obstruct for the Proceedings upon him in accordance with the other prevailing laws relating to such offence.

14.    Government of Nepal to be Plaintiff:
Government of Nepal shall be Plaintiff in the cases under this Act.

15.    Power to Frame Rules:
Government of Nepal may frame necessary Rules to carry out the objectives of this Act.