Nagarik Mancha 1989-2014 / Nagarik Mancha, an independent, autonomous citizen's initiative and a social action group, is neither affiliated nor aligned to any political party and does not accept funds from fund giving agencies.

Sasipada Bandyopadhyay Resource Centre (SBRC)

Why a Resource Centre ?
As a Citizens’ Initiative, a civil society body, the Nagarik Mancha has been active since 1989.

Irrespective of our achievements or the lack of it, one aspect of this initiative has shown steady growth over the years – the collection of reports, books, journals, newsletters, action alerts, leaflets, pamphlets, paper clippings, reference books, non-book materials, original correspondence, emails, photographs, field notes, original case studies, photocopies of document from other libraries, etc. All these materials kept streaming in connected with our areas of activity and on overlapping subjects.

On the other hand there have been document inputs from individuals and organisations, which they have given with the expectation that these would be used. We had accepted such documents with grace expecting them to add value to our collection.

Keen activists, journalists and researchers periodically have been using this document collection. However we must admit that space constraints and the rate of accumulation with the passage of time, had paved the way for near chaos.

Be it data, information or knowledge – all such facets of a Resource Centre should ideally be for common cause, for common use. We feel that resources should not have boundaries – organisational, institutional, personal or for that matter local, national, and global. It should not remain a property of a person or a specific organisation. We dreamt of an independent and autonomous collective of civil society representatives to take charge of its health and growth. We would have loved to be a part of this initiative. We were prepared to become one of the first contributors to the Resource Centre, to be set up in a more spacious location.

It is not a brainchild – it is an abject necessity. Aiming for dissemination of information, whatever be its form or content, should be the hallmark of any pro-people, pro-change citizen’s initiative. Publishing volumes, booklets, pamphlets, newsletters, leaflets had been till now our prime avenue for dissemination. Now we need to open up the highway – a Resource Centre for sharing and disseminating data, information and knowledge.

The Resource Centre will have both primary and secondary documents. Users will be at the centre of all activities. It will be a growing organism soliciting and accepting documents from multifarious sources – both individual and collective. It is not desired, or will not be designed, to become another repository, an archive, a library or a documentation centre. It will some day become a resource-based hub of pro-people social activism.

Till then we aim to make a modest start by getting it barely functional!

We need your feedback and support.

Sasipada Bandyopadhyay Resource Centre (SBRC)

SBRC became formally functional from 21 September 2006 with help and support from many associates, members, friends and well wishers.However we are deeply indebted to Smarajit Majumdar and Parimal Ghosh for their support in providing space to SBRC at their residence from 2006 till 2013.

It was located initially at AD 11/1 Rajarhat Road, Chowmatha, PO Baguiati, Jyangra, Kolkata 700059.
After almost three years it was shifted to a new location on 2 July 2009 at 278 Jodhpur Park Kolkata 700068.
SBRC has recently been shifted to a rented premise at RA 449, Naba Pally-Chingrighata, Salt Lake, Sector-4, Kolkata 700105.
It is less than a minute’s walk from Chingrighata Crossing on Eastern Metropolitan Bypass. When you face ‘VIP Sweets’ Chingrighata, you will need to take the lane on the left, and SBRC will be on the ground floor of the fourth building on the right.

Selects List of Programmes at SBRC

  1. 2008, 5 July – ‘Labour under stress’ – Speaker Byasdeb Dasgupta.
  2. 2008, 9 August – Interactive Discussion on ‘Development’.
  3. 2009, 4 August – Interactive Discussion on ‘Urban/Mass/Sustainable Transport and Kolkata’
  4. 2009, 15 August – Drama Reading Session by Sri Bibhash Chakraborty.
  5. 2009, 9 September – ‘Labour and Globalisation’: a talk by Jan Bremen.
  6. 2009, 12 September – Interactive Discussion on ‘JNNURM’
  7. 2009, 14 November – Interactive Discussion on  ‘Eviction along Kolkata Canal Banks’
  8. 2009, 14 November – Interactive Discussion on  ‘Demands of Indigenous and Forest People’
  9. 2010, 23 January – ‘Copenhagen Climate Summit’ – Experience Sharing
  10. 2010, 28 April – ‘Labour and Environment in China’ – Experience Sharing
  11. 2010, 15 May – Shri Tushar Bhattacharjee delivered his lecture on Marich Jhapi and          Dandakarannya followed by the Documentary film
  12. 2010, 12 June – Shri Parimal Ghosh spoke on ‘Labour Movement – Past, Present & Future’
  13. 2010, 10 July – Shri Supriyo Sen introduced his award winning film ‘Abar Asibo Phire’ with narration.


A. Sites From Which Free E-Books Can Be Downloaded

  • American Memory – This historical collection includes 1,500 nineteenth century American ebooks in several subject areas.
  • Athena – Mainly French and Swiss authors and documents. Nearly 10,000 links to books on philosophy, science, classics, literature, history, economics, etc. Multilingual.
  • Bible Gateway – The full text of approximately 100 versions of the Bible in 54 languages.
  • Blake Archive – This archive contains electronic copies of William Blake’s illuminated books, as well as a number of his illustrations, drawings, paintings and manuscript works.
  • Bookboon – Over 500 downloadable textbooks, mainly in the areas of Business/Economics, Engineering, Natural Sciences and IT, are available from this publisher of free ebooks.
  • Bookserver (Internet Archive) – A project of the Internet Archive. Access ebooks via the search box. Includes out-of-copyright texts from Project Gutenberg among other collections.
  • Bookshelf – Provides free access to books and documents in life science and healthcare, (National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine).
  • Botanicus – A freely accessible portal to historic botanical literature from the Missouri Botanical Garden Library. Currently includes over 1000 titles (books and journals) with an RSS feed available for recent additions. Images are free for non-commercial use.
  • British Library “Turning the pages” – Facsimiles of a selection of books from the British Library’s collection are available, with software that can turn virtual pages. Alternative static versions are also available.
  • CARRIE – This full-text electronic library hosted by the European University Institute in Italy, contains digitised primary documents as well as ebooks in history.
  • Cascadilla Proceedings Project – Linguistics conference proceedings from Cascadilla Press.
  • Chicago University Press free monthly ebook – A different ebook is available free each month from Chicago University Press.
  • Chinese Literature classics – A range of classical Chinese literature in English and a variety of Chinese language formats.
  • Christian Classics Ethereal Library – A digital library of hundreds of Christian books, including 42 Bibles in various languages.
  • Cornell University Library eBooks Free access to over 70,000 full text electronic books from the holdings of the libraries of Cornell University.
  • Cornell University Library Historical Monographs Collection – A collection of selected monographs with expired copyrights chosen from a variety of disciplines.
  • Digital Book Index – This index provides links to more than 165,000 ebooks covering a variety of subjects. Over 140,000 of these are free. The index can be searched and browsed.
  • Digital Library of India – Contains ebooks, ejournals and digitised manuscripts, predominantly in Indian languages.
  • DOAB: Directory of Open Access Books – Contains 1265 academic peer-reviewed books from 35 publishers, including several university presses.
  • E-Books Directory – A growing list of freely downloadable ebooks, documents and lecture notes. It is possible to search, browse by subject and see recently added or most popular titles.
  • ebooks@Adelaide – Collection of classic works including literature, philosophy, science, religion and history. Note these are published as new editions, with no attempt to retain pagination of print copies.
  • Etext Center University of Virginia Library – Contains English literature collections. Some are only available to University of Virginia users, but others such as Modern English and Middle English collections are publicly available.
  • Europeana – Out of copyright books from European research libraries.
  • Film Studies for Free – A list of open access ebooks on film studies.
  • Flat World Knowledge – A collection of textbooks that are free to read on screen, although they are not free to print. Follow the links from ‘catalog’ to access the ebooks.
  • FreeBooks4Doctors – This site provides access to 360 free medical books.
  • From the Archives (Guggenheim) – This site from the Guggenheim has 65 free exhibition catalogues, including exhibitions on artists such as Francis Bacon and Kandinsky, as well as movements and themes.
  • Gaia (University of California) – A collection of 28 open access books on global, international and area studies.
  • Gallica – This site from the Bibliothque Nationale de France allows access to thousands of digitised books, mostly in French.
  • Global Text Project – A collection of undergraduate e-textbooks available under a creative commons licence in business, computing, education, health, science and social science.
  • Google Books – Out-of-copyright books can be viewed online, and those in the public domain can be downloaded and saved.
  • HathiTrust — A collaborative repository from US research libraries, containing over 10 million digitised volumes. Not all are freely accessible, however over 2.5 million public domain digitised works can be downloaded.
  • HSRC Press – South African open access publisher in social science. The Press publishes the research output of the Human Science Research Council and externally authored works. Many titles are free to download.
  • InTech — A multidisciplinary Open Access publisher of books and journals covering the fields of Science, Technology and Medicine with over 2000 ebooks available to date.
  • Inter-Disciplinary Press eBooks  – Access to a growing collection of this publisher’s free eBooks.
  • International Deveolpment Research Centre (IDRC) eBooks – This site provides information, and in many instances free full text access, to books published by the International Development Research Centre (IDRC) which is a Canadian Crown corporation .
  •  Internet Archive – 5,102,826 Downloadable free books and texts. The Internet Archive Text Archive contains a wide range of fiction, popular books, children’s books, historical texts and academic books.
  • ipl2 (Internet Public Library) — 45000+ full text works, fiction and non-fiction plus online reference works. Divided into subject collections for easy browsing but also fully searchable.
  • Literature Project – Collection of full-text books, poems, plays and speeches.
  • Living Books About Life  — A series of curated, Open Access books about life — with life understood both philosophically and biologically. This series is a collaboration funded by JISC, and published by Open Humanities Press.
  • Making of America (Cornell University) – A digital library for American social history containing 267 digitised books from the 19th century, but focusing mostly on serials.
  • Making of America (Michigan University) – A digital library for American social history containing approximately 1,600 digitised books from 1850-1877.
  • ManyBooks – Classic texts can be downloaded to a range of formats including for a variety of ebook readers. New titles are added regularly and an RSS feed is available for new additions.
  • MobileRead – As well as an online e-publishing forum, the ebooks tab provides access to free ebooks that can be downloaded to ebook readers.
  • Mobipocket Free ebooks – The site contains 11000+ ebooks in several languages that can be freely downloaded in .mobi format.
  • MSRI Books – A series of Mathematical Sciences Research Institute Pulications from Cambridge University Press. The full text of new books is available a few months after publication.
  • Münchener Digitalisierungszentrum Digitale Bibliothek — Important rare books resource based mainly on the collections of the Bavarian State Library.
  • National Academies Press – Over 4000 titles from the US National Academy of Sciences, National Academy of Engineering, the Institute of Medicine and the National Research Council are available to download. The free pdfs are available exclusively from the NAP site and remain subject to copyright laws.
  • OAPEN Library (Open Access Publishing in European Networks) – A multidisciplinary Open Access library of 860+ titles from European publishers freely available as PDF files, including titles in several languages. Includes 30 titles from UK publishers under the OAPEN-UK JISC ebooks project.
  • Ohio State University Press – Offers open access to a range of scholarly texts, particularly in literature and history.
  • Online Books Page – A regularly updated listing of over 1 million ebooks that are freely readable over the internet, maintained by the University of Pennsylvania Library.
  • Open Access Textbooks – The Resources tab contains links to websites that provide open access textbooks.
  • Open Book Project – A computer science textbook and series on electricity and electronics are available, as well as tutorials and courses.
  • Open Book Publishers – An independent academic publisher in Humanities and Social Sciences. Many of their books are available to read for free online.
  • Open Library – A project of the Internet Archive, provides records for 20 million books, and access to 1.7 million scanned books. The search can be limited to ebooks only.
  • O’Reilly Open Books Project – A collection of free ebooks in computer science.
  • Oxford Text Archive — The archive holds several thousand electronic texts and linguistics corpora, in a variety of languages. Includes online versions of works by individual authors, standard reference works and a range of language corpora.
  • Penn State Romance Studies – An open access peer-reviewed monograph series in the languages, literatures, and cultures of the Romance languages.
  • Perseus Digital Library – A searchable and browsable collection of ebooks. The largest collections are classics and 19th century American studies, but other collections include Arabic, Germanic and Renaissance materials.
  • Project Gutenberg – Over 36,000 titles, in several languages and different eBook formats.
  • Society of Antiquities of Scotland – As well as conference proceedings, the site provides access to out-of-print titles in this archaeological monograph series.
  • Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy – An open access dynamic philosophy reference resource maintained by experts in the field.
  • University of Adelaide Press – The University of Adelaide’s Barr Smith Library has established a digital Press with an electronic edition of each new book published as well as print. The electronic editions are Open Access and free, in PDF format. There are currently 27 titles. (Nov 2012).
  • University of California Press – Over 500 titles from UCP’s Scholarship Editions are available to the public. These include books on art, science, history, music, religion and fiction.
  • University of Pittsburgh Press – A multidisciplinary collection of over 750 monographs are available on open access.
  • University of Virginia Press: Rotunda – The Founders Early Access collection offers free full text to unpublished documents from the founders of the United States. These documents may change as further editorial work is undertaken, and once a document is published, it is removed from this site.
  • Victorian Prose Archive – A collection of texts of scholarly interest by eight Victorian authors, including Matthew Arnold and Oscar Wilde.
  • Wikibooks – Multidisciplinary open-content textbooks, which can be edited by anyone. Many books are incomplete, however featured books are those that have been considered by the community to represent the best quality wikibooks.

B. Sites From Which Free Ebooks That Can Be Read Online

  • Alex Catalogue of Electronic texts – A collection of public domain documents from American and English literature as well as Western philosophy.
  • Bibliomania – More than 2000 free texts, study guides and reference resources in novels, poetry and biograhies.
  • NCBI Bookshelf – A growing collection of online biomedical textbooks made available by the (US) National Centre for Biotechnology Information.
  • Online Literature Library – Classic works of literature
  • Page by Page Books – Hundreds of classic books in literature and history.
  • Project Bartleby – Literature, reference and poetry.
  • Questia – Over 5,000 classic and rare books available to read online for free.
  • Universal Library – Titles in all subjects, hosted by the Carnegie Mellon University.
  • University of Arizona Press – Offers 13 titles which are free to read online, mainly in astronomy, archaeology and anthropology.

C. Sites Showing Indexes Of E-Books Freely Available On The Web

  • Online Books Page – A regularly updated listing of over 1 million ebooks that are freely readable over the internet, maintained by the University of Pennsylvania Library
  • Digital Book Index  – This index provides links to more than 165,000 ebooks covering a variety of subjects. Over 140,000 of these are free. The index can be searched and browsed.
  • E-Books Directory  A growing list of freely downloadable ebooks, documents and lecture notes. It is possible to search, browse by subject and see recently added or most popular titles.

Note: This is just an initial compilation. More links will be added soon. It will be organized. This is just a preliminary effort to give an indication of some of our plans. There are errors which will be sorted out. Kindly bear with us.