Tata Central Archives (TCA) is the corporate business archives of the Tata group. Thousands of documents, letters, photographs, memorabilia, press clippings, audio-video recordings and other materials relating to the genesis and development of the Tata group, its leading personalities and manifold activities, are stored and preserved in its state-of-the-art facilities.
Business archives was a relatively new concept in India in the 1980s, and it was as at this point that the ideas of setting up a corporate archive for the Tata group took shape.
J.R.D. Tata, the then Group Chairman, first felt the need of setting up an archive as early as 1978. This was prompted by the paucity of an official repository of Records while compiling a book to mark the centenary celebrations of the Empress Mills at Nagpur – a flagship venture of the Founder Jamsetji Tata.
The Archives project gathered momentum in 1989, which marked the 150th birth anniversary of Jamsetji Tata. The proposal to establish a business archive was mooted by Russi M. Lala, the Tata chronicler who understood the importance of protecting and preserving the written and spoken word before they were destroyed and lost to posterity. The proposal was put before the Board of Tata Sons Limited on September 5, 1990, and on January 7, 1991, TCA was formally launched by J.R.D. Tata in Bombay(Mumbai). TCA became a Division of Tata Services Limited in 1997. TCA was the first business archives to be established in India.
Following the inauguration, Records from various Tata companies were inspected, collected and brought to the Archives which functioned in an office in Fort, Bombay. TCA moved to its present premises located within the Tata Management Training Centre, Pune in 1999.
Ratan N. Tata, the then Group Chairman, formally inaugurated the building on February 13, 2001. The Archives were thereafter opened to the public from March 3, 2001. In 2006, TCA became the first archives in the country to receive the ISO 9001:2000 certification.
Collection of Archival Records is an ongoing process and we are constantly adding new Records to our repositories. Records in the custody of TCA are preserved in state-of-the-art climate controlled repositories. In addition, conservation of important Records is undertaken on a priority basis. We have the latest hardware and archival management software to help store, search, retrieve and disseminate information. In keeping in line with international archival standards, we are in the process of digitising all our collections. TCA follows all archival ethics stringently and ensures that all official Records are tamper-proof and secure.
TCA is a central point of information and a centre for research, for Tata companies, researchers and the general public on the rich history of the House of Tata.
Over the years, we have curated numerous exhibitions on Tata personalities, companies and institutions. The exhibition galleries are open to Tata employees as well as the general public. A visit to the Archives helps visitors understand the ethos of the Group and appreciate the quality of the people who shaped it.