Prime Ministers’ Museum opens to public

One of the galleries a the new museum of Prime Ministers in New Delhi.

One of the galleries a the new museum of Prime Ministers in New Delhi. | Photo Credit: Damini Nath 

The Nehru Memorial Museum and Library (NMML) on Thursday opened its doors to the public with a new look, that of the Prime Ministers’ Museum dedicated to all former Prime Ministers.

The residence of India’s first Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru for 16 years that was converted into a memorial after his death in 1964, Teen Murti Bhawan, has been refurbished over the past three years. The new Prime Ministers’ Museum building in the complex that was inaugurated by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on April 14 welcomed visitors for the first time.

In what was earlier the reception of Teen Murti Bhawan, photos and displays related to Nehru made way for a model of the new building, exhibits on the Constitution and Constitution-makers and India’s democracy. Outside, the Ambassador car used by Vajpayee is showcased.

The museum’s curator, Vintee Sain, said: “The Prime Ministers’ Museum that was recently inaugurated was thrown open to the public today. It includes the new iconic building and the refurbished heritage building. For the first time, selected memorabilia from the toshakhana (treasure house) gifted to Nehru, Vajpayee, Mr. Singh and Mr. Modi have been put on display.”

Standing in the new building, Shivam Sharma, an MBA student from Delhi, said the museum stood out to him as being “modern compared to others” and that he had made sure to visit on day one as he had heard a lot about the new building. “Narendra Modi is my favourite,” he said, while waiting for a letter signed in Mr. Modi’s handwriting to be printed by a writing robot — one of the popular features at the new museum. While Mr. Modi was the top choice for most visitors, some asked for letters signed by Indira Gandhi, Manmohan Singh, Lal Bahadur Shastri and Atal Bihari Vajpayee.

Visiting from Bengaluru with her family, Ramya Janardhan Rao said the new museum had incorporated technology and was an “interactive” way to learn about the lives of former Prime Ministers. The family left with letters ‘signed’ by their choice of Prime Ministers as souvenirs.

Also at the museum on Thursday was Ramvir Singh Bidhuri, the BJP’s Leader of Opposition in the Delhi Assembly, who posed for a photo in front of the plaque declaring the inauguration date. Mr. Bidhuri said he wanted to visit the museum himself.

“So far, there were museums for three Prime Ministers – Nehru, Indira Gandhi and Lal Bahadur Shastri. But now we can see the contribution of all Prime Ministers, whether it is Manmohan Singh who was there for 10 years or others who had shorter stints. Mr. Modi answered the demand of the people,” Mr. Bidhuri said.

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Printable version | Jun 16, 2022 8:49:54 am |