MARKAZ-E TAQIQĀT-E FĀRSI-E IRĀN  WA PĀKESTĀN (Iran-Pakistan Institute of Persian Studies), an institute established as per an agreement signed between the Ministry of Culture and Art (Wezārat-e farhang wa honar) of Iran and Ministry of Education and Scientific Research of Pakistan on 1 Ābān 1350 Š./23 October 1971 for “strengthening and perpetuating the bonds of cultural, educational and linguistic co-operation between the two countries and with the object of arriving at the greatest possible understanding  between them through mutual friendly co-operation in the fields of culture and education” (Agreement, p. 1). It began functioning at Rawalpindi, Pakistan, in 1971, then shifted to Islamabad in 1975.

The Institute, was set up in order to study and conduct research in the fields of the common cultural heritage of Iran and Pakistan, including Persian language, literature, and art in Pakistan; to establish a modern library containing manuscripts, printed books, and microfilms of manuscripts and books; to provide assistance to scholars and cooperate with scholars and cultural institutions in Pakistan and abroad; to publish research articles and Persian books and manuscripts; and to establish a printing press for publishing Persian books (article 1 of the constitution).

Units. The Institute has a library and archive of its own, named the Ganjbaḵš Library.  In 2013, it held a total of 17,330 manuscripts and 49,000 printed books and journals. Its studio for microfilming and photography, by June 2010 had prepared 886 black and white photographs and 1,584 slides of historic places of Pakistan, besides 1,361 microfilms and 1,500 compact discs of manuscripts.  There was also a binding section, which was active until 1978.

Publications.  The institute picked seven major subject areas for its publications under the general title Ganjina (Treasure), and published 201 titles of Persian, Arabic, Urdu, Punjabi, and English languages during 1971-2013 on a variety of subjects. The seven subjects are the following:

(1) Catalogue and bibliography.  A total of 46 volumes have been published in this series. The most notable among them is the union catalogue of Persian manuscripts in Pakistan compiled by Aḥmad Monzawi (Fehrest-e moštarak-e nosḵahā-ye ḵaṭṭi-e fārsi-e Pākestān, 1986-97), introducing about 60,000 manuscripts in 14 volumes (1982-97).  Separate catalogues were also published of libraries such as the Ganjbaḵš of Islamabad, National Museum of Pakistan in Karachi, Hamdard in Karachi, Punjab University at Lahore, Anjoman-e Taraqqi-e Ordu in Karachi, Kama Institute of Oriental Studies in Bombay.  In the series of bibliographies, the institute published the catalogue of rare Persian printed books preserved in Ganjbaḵš Library (Čāp-e sangi-e ketābhā-ye fārsi-e kamyāb-e ketāb-ḵāna-ye Ganjbaḵš, 1986-89) by Arif Naushahi (ʿĀref Nowšāhi), the bibliography of books translated from Persian to Pakistani languages (Tarjama-ye motun-e fārsi ba zabānhā-ye pākestāni, 1986) by Aḵtar Rahi, and Ḥakim Ḥabib-al-Raḥmān’s Ṯalāṯa-ye ḡassāla, a bibliography of Persian, Arabic, and Urdu works written in Bengal, abridged and translated by Arif Naushahi (1989).

(2) Mysticsm (taṣawwof wa ʿerfān).  In this series the institute published a number of texts relating to mysticism, such as Ḵᵛāja Moḥammad Pārsā’s Resāla-ye qodsiya (ed. Malek Moḥammad Eqbāl, 1975); sayings of Jalāl-al-Din Maḵdum Jahāniān Jahāngašt, titled Ḵolāṣat al-alfāz wa jāmeʿ al-ʿolum (ed. Ḡolām Sarvar, 1992); Bāqer b. ʿOṯmān Boḵāri’s Jawāher al-awliāʾ (ed. Ḡolām Sarvar, 1976); sayings of Ḥāji Moḥammad  Nawšāh Ganjbaḵš, titled Čahār bahār (ed. Arif Naushahi, 1984); and Badr-al-Din Badri Kašmiri’s Serāj al-ṣāleḥin (ed. Sirāj-al-din, 1997).  Some biographical works about mystics were also published, for instance, Šamim Maḥmud Zaydi’s Ahwāl wa āṯār-e Bahāʾ-al-Din Zakariyāʾ Moltāni wa ḵolāṣat al-ʿārefin (1974); Moḥammad-Ṣādeq Kašmiri’s Kalamāt al-ṣadiqin (ed. M. Salim Aḵtar, 1988); Moḥammad Riāż’s Aḥwāl wa āṯār wa ašʿār-e Mir Sayyed ʿAli Hamadāni (1985, and 1991); Nur-al-Din Jaʿfar Badaḵši’s Ḵolāṣat al-manāqeb (ed. Ashref Zafar,1995); Aḥmad Beg Lāhori’s Aḥwāl wa maqāmāt-e Nawšāh Ganjbaḵš (ed. Arif Naushahi, 2001); and Moḥammad Aḵtar Čima’s Maqām-e Šayḵ Faḵr-al-Din Ebrāhim ʿErāqi dar taṣawwof-e eslāmi  (1994 and 2006)

(3) Astronomy and chronology (gāh-šomāri wa aḵtar-šenāsi). In this series was published Čahār taqwim az do sāl wa dar yak šahr, by ʿAli-Akbar Jaʿfari (1973).

(4) Medicine and pharmacology (ʿolum-e ṭebb wa dāru-šenāsi). In this series was published Tāriḵ-e rawābeṭ-e pezeški-e Irān wa Pākestān, by Nayyer Wāseṭi (1974).

(5) Literature. A number of significant biographical dictionaries (taḏkera) have been published in this series, including Aḥmad-ʿAli Hāšemi Sandilāwi’s Maḵzan al-ḡarāʾeb (ed. Moḥammad-Bāqer, III-V, 1992-94), Serāj-al-Din ʿAli Khan Ārzu’s Majmaʿ al-nafāʾes (ed. Zib-al-Nesāʾ Solṭān-ʿAli, Mahr Nur Moḥammad, and Moḥammad Sarfrāz Ẓafar, 3 vols, 2004-06), and Āftāb Rāy Lakhnavi’s Riāż al-ʿārefin (ed. Ḥosām-al-Din Rāšedi, 2 vols, 1977-82).  Included in the series are also the collected Persian poems (divān) of some local poets, such as Divān-e Rāyj Siālkoti (ed. Moḥammad Sarfarāz Ẓafar, 1996), Divān-e Nāṣer-ʿAli Sarhendi (ed. Rāšeda Ḥasan  Hāšemi, 2005), as well as Zahuruddin Ahmad, History of Persian Literature in Pakistan (in the contemporary period) 1984.

(6) Works concerning information about Pakistan.  These include: Ḥakim Nayyer Wāseṭi, Tāriḵ-e rawābeṭ-e pezeški-e Irān wa Pākestān (1974); Sayyed Ḥasan ʿĀref Naqawi, Taḏkera-ye ʿolamā-ye emāmi-e Pākestān, (1984); and Šamim Maḥmud Zaydi, Qāʾed-e aʿẓam Moḥammad-ʿAli Jenāḥ (2005).

(7)  History.  In this series were published Pandata Kalhana, Raj tarangini (History of Kashmir), ed. Ṣāber Āfāqi, (1974); Tolek Beg, Tāriḵ-e delgošā-ye šamšir-ḵāni, ed. Ṭāhera Parvin Akram (2005).

Facsimile editions of important Persian manuscripts include ʿAli b. Moḥammad Adib  Karmini’s Takmelat al-aṣnāf, a 7th/13th-century Arabic-Persian dictionary (1985), Rašid-al-Din Fażl-Allāh’s Asʾala wa ajweba rašidi (1993), Ḥāfeẓ Moḥammad Boḵāri’s, al-Mostaḵlaṣ, a Qorʾanic  Arabic-Persian dictionary of the 7th-8th/13-14th centuries (1982), and Jahānpošā-ye Ḵāqān, an anonymous history of Shah Esmāʿil Ṣafawi written in the years 948-55/1541-48 (ed. Allāh Detā Możṭar, 1986).

Administration.  According to the agreement, establishing the institute was to be an initiative with the joint responsibility of the governments of Iran and Pakistan, but, since its establishment, the institute has been totally run and financed by the government of Iran.  The Capital Development Authority (CDA) in Islamabad provided a plot of land for its building, but never constructed it.  Seventeen Iranians served as permanent directors or as caretakers from 1971 to 2013, including ʿAli-Akbar Jaʿfari, the pioneer director (1971-77), Akbar Sabut (1981-87), and Neʿmat-Allāh Irānzāda (2003-06).  Ganjbaḥš Library enjoyed the services of  Iranian cataloguers Moḥammad-Ḥosayn Tasbiḥi (1969-77, 1983-2006, and 2008) and Aḥmad Monzawi (1977-90), who managed the library and  prepared  the catalogues.  There has been no permanent director and librarian in the institute since 2008, resulting in the decline of its functions.  There are still thousands of Persian manuscripts there to be studied.

Press. The Institute had a plan to publish a research journal by the name Fārsi wa Mehr-o māh or Jong-e fārsi, which did not materialize.  In 1985, the office of the Iranian cultural attaché in Islamabad started publishing a quarterly Persian research journal, Dāneš, for the promotion of Persian literature and culture in the Indian subcontinent, which continued until 1996 (issue no. 44), when it was transferred to the Institute.  Editors were Aref Naushahi (nos. 1-15, 1985-89), Sebṭ Ḥasan Rażawi (nos. 16-50, 1989-97), Šagofta Musawi (no. 51-53, 1998), Mahdi Tawassoli (nos. 54-55, 1998-99), and Mortażā Musawi (nos. 56-111, 2013).  Altogether 111 issues have been published (to 2013).  Three indexes (Fehrest-e maqālāt) of the articles published in Dāneš have been compiled.  The first one, an appendix to issues 54-55 (1999), lists articles published in the first fifty-three issues; the second index, an appendix to issue 86 (2006), lists articles published in nos. 55-85; and the third, an appendix to issue 99 (2010), lists articles published in nos. 86-99.  The first two were prepared by Mahdi Tawassoli, and the third by Šagofta ʿAbbāsi.

Cooperation with other organizations.  In order to promote Persian language and literature, the Institute actively worked with the National University of Modern Languages in Islamabad in preparing the syllabus for Persian language and Area Studies and offered scholarships to students working for their Master of Arts degree in Persian.  The Institute also has cooperated with publishers in private sectors for publishing Persian and Urdu books concerning Persian literature.  Thus it published Mawlawi’s Maṯnawi maʿnawi ﴾1978) and Divān-e Ḥāfeẓ (1984), both with Urdu  translations by Qāżi Sajjād Ḥosayn; Divān-e Bidel; Hojwiri’s Kašf-al-maḥjub (1978); Čahār bahār (sayings of Shaikh Nawšāh Ganjbaḵš Qāderi, 1984); Tāriḵ-e ʿabbāsi; Kalemāt al-ṣadiqin of Moḥammad Ṣadiq Kašmiri Hamadāni (1988); and Arif Nowshahi’s Urdu translation of Jāmi by ʿAli-Aṣḡar Ḥekmat (1983; rev. ed., 2012). The Institute  distributes its publications and the journal free of charge.

The Islamic Revolution of 1978-79 caused some sections to close—the photographic section for making slides and photographs of historical places, and the binding section.  The Institute also could not complete some academic projects that had been proposed before the revolution (Garawi, pp. 40-42), for instance, a catalogue of Persian printed books in the subcontinent, a bibliography of Persian articles regarding Persian literature and Iranian studies in the subcontinent and Persian books that have been or were currently being taught in schools of the subcontinent.

News and information regarding the Institute can be found (in Persian) at its website,



Agreement signed between the Ministry of Culture and Art of Iran and Ministry of Education and Scientific Research of Pakistan on 23 October 1971.

Akhlaq Ahmad Ahan, Hendustān men fārsi saḥāfat ki tāriḵ, Delhi, 2008, pp. 238-39.

Moḥammad Asʿadi, “Markaz-e taḥqiqāt-e fārsi-e Irān wa Pākestān,” Nāma-ye pārsi 1/2, 1996, pp. 327-35.

“Asās-nāma-ye Markaz-e taḥqiqāt-e fārsi-e Irān wa Pākestān,” Nāma-ye pārsi 1/2, 1996, pp. 208-12.

Mahdi Ḡarawi, Naḵostin kār-nāma-ye Markaz-e taḥqiqāt-e fārsi-e Irān wa Pākestān, Islamabad, 1979.

 “Gozāreš-i az faʿāliyathā-ye Markaz-e taḥqiqāt-e fārsi-e Irān wa Pākestān,” Meškāt, no. 16, 1987, pp. 188-96.

ʿAbd-al-Raḥim Ḥasan-nežād, “Markaz-e taḥqiqāt-e fārsi-e Irān wa Pākestān, poštibān-e rawābeṭ-e do kešwar,  Dāneš, nos. 72-73, 2003, pp. 123-30.

An Introduction to Iran-Pakistan Institute of Persian Studies Islamabad, Islamabad, [1997].

ʿAli-Akbar Jaʿfari, Taḥqiqāt-e fārsi dar Pākestān, Islamabad, 1974.

Enʿām-al-Ḥaqq Kawṯar (Inamul Haq Kausar),Naqš-e Markaz-e taḥqiqāt-e fārsi dar ḥefẓ wa eḥyā wa gostaraš-e zabān wa adab-e fārsi dar manṭaqa be’l-ḵoṣuṣ dar Balučestān-e Pākestān,” Dāneš, nos. 76-77, 2004, pp.142-58.

Aḥmad Monzawi, “Kār-nāma-ye Markaz-e taḥqiqāt-e fārsi-e Irān wa Pākestān dar kār-e fehrest-nevisi wa ketāb-šenāsi,” Dāneš, no. 26, 1991, pp. 37-51.

Mortażā Musawi,Naqš-e Markaz-e taḥqiqāt-e fārsi dar ḥefẓ wa eḥyā wa tawsaʿa-ye zabān wa adab-e fārsi,” Dāneš, nos. 72-73, 2003, pp.157-164 .

ʿĀref Nowšāhi (Aref Naushahi), “Naqš-e Markaz-e taḥqiqāt-e fārsi dar ḥefẓ-e mirāṯ-e moštarak dar goḏašta wa āyanda,” Dāneš, nos. 76-77, 2004, pp. 137-42.

ʿAli Pirniā, “Markaz-e taḥqiqāt-e fārsi-e Irān wa Pākestān wa moʾassasa-ye melli-e zabānhā-ye novin,” Dāneš, no. 26, 1991, pp. 96-107.

Qāsem Ṣafi, ‘‘Āšnāʾi bā Markaz-e taḥqiqāt-e fārsi-e Irān wa Pākestān dar goft-o-gu bā čand tan az masʾulān,” Dāneš, no 26, 1991, pp. 7-36.

Ṣoḡrā Bānu Šagofta, “Naqš-e Markaz-e taḥqiqāt-e fārsi-e Irān wa Pākestān dar gostaraš-e zabān wa adabiyāt-e fārsi,” Dāneš, nos 72-73, 2003, pp. 131-36 .

Moḥammad-Ḥosayn Tasbiḥi, Fārsi-e pākestāni wa maṭāleb-e Pākestān-šenāsi, Rawalpindi, 1974, I, pp. 37-41.

Idem, Fehrest-e entešārāt-e Markaz-e taḥqiqāt-e fārsi-e Irān wa Pākestān az āḡāz-e taʾsis 1350 tā 1370 Š./1971-1991, Islamabad, 1991.

Idem, “Ḵedmat-e entešārāti-e Markaz-e taḥqiqāt-e fārsi-e Irān wa Pākestān,” Dāneš, nos. 74-75, 2003, pp. 145-48.

(Arif Naushahi)

Originally Published: January 1, 2000

Last Updated: November 8, 2013