About Us

History: In 1937 Parshwanath Vidyapeeth was established as an Institute of Indology in general and Jainology in particular in the pious memory of Sthanakavasi Jainacharya Shri Sohanlalji Maharaj. Spread over the area of 4.5 acres with is sprawling campus, lush greeneries and canopies of magnificent avenues; this Institute is testimony of the ingenuity and foresight of its founder Late Lala Shri Harjas Rai Jain. It is managed by Parshwanath Vidyapeeth, a society registered under the Society Registration Act of 1860. Over the years, the Vidyapeeth has done commendable work in the area of research and publication on Jain Philosophy, Culture, History, Prakrit language, Jain art etc. Besides, 176 publications to credit, about 63 scholars of the Parshwanath Vidyapeeth have been awarded Ph.D. from Banaras Hindu University, which recognize it as a Research center in the field of Jainology. It is also recognized by Scientific & Industrial Research Organization, Dept of Science and Technology, Government of India for conducting research. Being a living embodiment of such visionaries as Pt. Sukhlal Sanghvi, Pt. Bechardas Doshi, Late Padmabhusan Pt. D.D. Malvania this Institute epitomizes a synthesis of all sects of Jainas giving them equal importance. Vidyapeeth has been regularly organizing National Seminars, symposia, lecture series and brings out a quarterly bi-lingual (Hindi, English) research journals SHRAMANA. In view of its unique status and the contribution in the study of Jainology and other branches of oriental learning, the Parshwanath Vidyapeeth has earned reputation in the academic world both within and outside India. PV’s Journey till date: In 1935 after Kaldharma (demise) of Pujya Shri Sohanlalji Maharaj, a Society named ‘Shri Sohanlal Jaina Dharma Prasharaka Samiti’ was established at Amritsar with a view to promote the cause of Jainism through original researches. Lala Tribhuvan Nath ji, Kapurathala became the first President and Lala Harjasrai Jain was elected the first Secretary of the society. To explore a better place to establish a Research Institute, Lala Tribhuvan Nathji, accompanied by Lala Harjasraiji and Prof. Mastaram visited Varanasi. There he consulted Pt. Sukhlal Sanghvi who was Professor at Oriental learning Department and finally they agreed to establish a Research Institute in Benares. A Building adjacent to Banaras Hindu University campus was taken on rent. The Society started its own educational activities from this rented premise. In 1938 a Shatavadhani Ratnchandra Library was started with only 150 books and few research periodicals the number of which now has increased to 40,000 books, 2000 Manuscripts with 150 periodicals. Shri Krishnachandraji, Shri Ratnachandraji, Shri Mahendra Kumarji and Shri Anand Swaroop were the students of first batch. In 1939 the Institute got associated with Government Sanskrit College, Benares for Shstri and Jaina Darshanacharya degrees. 1n 19942 the first ‘Jagannath Jaina Hostel’ was started in its new campus with an area of 1120 squire Gaj. In order to develop research activities and provide scholarship to the scholars a ‘Ratnachand Memorial Fund’ of Rs. Rs. 23,100/= was established in 1943. In 1944 Shri Shantilal Banmali Sheth was appointed as first Caretaker of the Institute who promoted entry of the students of Thavar and Rajkot Jaina Gurukul. To publish the research papers of the scholars a ‘Jaina Cultural Research Society’ was formed. In the same year a ‘Pujya Kashiram Memorial Scholarship Fund’ was introduced for scholarship which attracted several students. The Research work started in 1948 with admission of Shri Nathmal Tatia (Former Director- Jaina Vishva Bharati Sansthan, Ladnun) and Dr. Indrachandra Shastri (scholar of great repute on the name whom a Post Ticket was released by Govt. of India. A monthly Research Journal’ SHRAMANA’ was introduced this year. In 1950 the Institute was registered with Society Registration Act 1860. The institute celebrated its Silver Jubilee in 1962. After Shri Krishnachandracharya went to Panchkoola, on 27th April 1964, Dr. Mohan Lal Mehta took over the Institute as its first Director. It was the year when the first Ph.D. dissertation of Dr. Gulabchandra Chaudhari was published by the Institute and Dr. Gokulchand Jain got awarded Ph. D. degree from Banaras Hindu University. Five more students admitted to the course. In 1967 first book of its important publication series; Jaina Sahitya Ka Brihad Itihas’ Vol. I was published which became very popular amongst the Jaina scholars. From 1968-1970, six Ph. D. scholars got their Ph.D. In 1970 after demise of Lala Shri Tribhuvan Nath Jain, the first President of the Society, Shri Jangilal Jain was elected the second President of the Society. In 1972 the Institute was recognized by Banaras Hindu University as an external Research Centre for Ph. D. In 1975, after serving the Institution for 40 years Lala Shri Harjas Rai Jain, due to his poor health quit as a General Secretary and Shri B. N. Jain took over as Second General Secretary of the Institute. In 1977 Dr. Mohan Lal Mehta joined University of Pune and the post of Director was filled in 1979 by Dr. Sagarmal Jain who joined the Institute as Director. In department of philosophy 17 students selected Jainism as special paper in M.A. Five amongst them submitted their post graduate dissertation on Jainism. In 1981 Sadhvi Priya Darshanashri and Sadhvi Sudarshanashri came to Institute for research. This year was marked by Dr. Sukhlal Sanghvi’s Birth Centenary celebration. Many scholars of repute from all over India joined the Celebration. In 1982 Sadhvi Sumatibai Swami joined institute with her 4 disciples and 3 Mumuksharthis for study. In 1982 and 1983 28 and 31 students respectively were offered Jaina Philosophy as special paper for their M. A. exam. The faculty members of PV started to engage classes of department of philosophy, Banaras Hindu University. During these years many important publications were brought out by the Institute. On 3rd February, 1983 Dr. Yasuki Nara from Kamojova University, Tokyo (Japan) delivered his lecture on Zen Buddhism. On 25th February Prof. C. B. Tripathi visited the Institute and had a fruitful discussion with students and teachers of PV. Prof. Padmanabh Jaini, University of California (USA) delivered his lecture first time in the Institute on the topic ‘Possibilities of Jaina Studies in Foreign Universities. This year was very important as Bauddha Dharma Guru Shri Dalai Lama visited the Institute and blessed the students of the Institute. On 4th April 1984, David V. Waterhouse, University of Toranto visited the Institute and delivered his lecture on Mountain Cults Marshal Arts and Asceticism’. Year 1986 was very important because this year many research activities took place. Four students were awarded Ph. D. degree and Muni Chandraprabha Sagar was conferred Mahopadhyaya titles on his historical work’ Samay Sundar ka vyaktitva aura Krititva. In 1989, Shri Jaiprabh Vijayji of Tristutika Sangh arrived PV for study with his disciple Muni Hitesh Vijayji. In the same year Smt. Rukmini Devi Diploma in Prakrit and Jainology was started with generous donation of Shri Deepchand Gardi. In 1990 the Institute celebrated its Golden Jubilee and a National Seminar was organized at this occasion. In 1994, appointing more than 10 scholars, the Institute applied to University Grants Commission for the status of Deemed to be University. First time, on recommendation of UGC Post Graduate Classes in 4 subjects were started which lasted only one year and due to not being able to deposit required endowment of 3 Crore, status of Deemed to be University could not be given to the Institute. In 1995 Sadhvi Maniprabhashriji of Kharatar Gachcha joined PV with her disciples Sadhvi Vidyutprabhaji and Sadhvi Saumya Gunashriji for study. In 1996 Dr. Sagarmal Jain visited USA on invitation of JAFNA and delivered his lectures there. In 1997 Dr. Sagarmal Jain was retired after rendering his services for 20 years. During his tenure the Institute got developed by all means. More than 135 publications were brought out from the Institute and more than 56 scholars had got their Ph. D.s. After his retirement Dr. Shriprakash Pandey took over as Administrative officer of the Institute and Academic head was Dr. Sagarmal Jain. In 1998 the Institute celebrated its Diamond Jubilee and more than 10 books published from the Institute were released at this occasion. A Museum was established this year with 35 replicas purchased from Lucknow Museum. Later on with the help Shri Satyendra Mohan Jain, a S M Jain Gallery in the museum and an Art Gallery was opened. In 2000, Prof. Bhagchandra Jain joined the Institute as a Director. He worked here for one year and his short spell of time contributed a lot to the Institute. In 2003 Prof. Maheshwari Prasad joined as Director and worked here up to 2006. In 2005 with the inspiration of Dr. Sulekh Jain (USA) and Dr. Shugan C. Jain, first batch of 5 students of International School for Jaina Studies (ISSJS) visited the Institute and spent almost a week and studied Jainism. Again in 2007, the second group visited. Then after 2007 it became the regular feature of the Institute. In 2009 a ISJS PV Global Centre (for Ahimsa & Indological Research) was founded under the aegis of ISSJS and its Promoter Prof. Cromwell Crawford, University of Hawaii. Since then the ISSJS groups visit every year and completes their study here. In 2010 Prof. Sudarshan Lal Jain took over as Director of the Institute. Today under the Chairmanship of Dr. Shugan C. Jain and Secretaryship of Shri Indrabhooti Barar the Institute is climbing new heights of academic world.