*Tracing Your Roots > South Asian > Records in Other Countries
* National Archives of India 
The National Archives of India was established in 1891 as the Imperial Record Department. It was first set up in Calcutta. Since 1947, the National Archives of India has established four regional offices at Bhopal, Jaipur, Bhubaneswar and Pandicherry.

Births, Deaths and Marriages

The births and deaths in India are normally registered with the local Municipality Office, and the registers are passed to the District Registrar's Office.

Deaths are only registered when there is a legal case, or if the deceased had left land or had a bank account, claimed a pension or if the death occurred by an accident or murder, or for other special circumstances.

Well-off families normally announce the deaths in the national and local newspapers. The Hindu, the national and regional newspaper, has an obituary column. It started in 1878 as a weekly then it became a daily in 1889.

Marriage records of Goans and Anglo-Indians Christians are held at the various churches. Muslim marriages (Nikka Nama) are normally recorded in the local mosque registers, but not all the records have survived or actively been conserved.

If the marriage was conducted legally in the register office, the relevant records will be held at the local marriage registration office.

Some temples in India keep Hindu marriage registers, but they are not complete records. Well-off families announced marriages in the local or national newspapers.

Census Records

Pre-1947 census records are available at the National Archives of India for the period 1871-1923.

The General Report on the Census of India for 1891 is available at *www.chaf.lib.latrobe.edu.au/dcd/default.htm. It contains data on India in the following categories:

  • Geography
  • Politics
  • Population
  • Occupations
  • Ethnography
  • Language
  • Race
  • Caste
  • Tribe
  • Literacy
  • Infirmities
  • Sex and age distribution
Data on individual names is not available on this web site.

The Central and State Census records from 1947 to the present are held at:
The Central Secretariat Library (CSL)
Indian Official Document Collection
G, Wing, Shastri Bhavan
New Delhi, 110001

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Creators: Abi Husainy