Kolkata, Feb 2: Union Minister of Culture Chandresh Kumari Katoch Sunday said her ministry is committed to reforming museums in the country to bring them at par with institutions of international level.
Participating in the inauguration of the bi-centenary celebrations of the Indian Museum in the West Bengal capital, Katoch said her department, which allotted Rs.100 crore for the renovation of the country’s oldest museum here, will also undertake renovation of two more iconic city monuments – the Victoria Memorial Hall and the National Library.
“We are committed to bring all our museums to international level and ensuring adequate renovation is undertaken from time to time,” Katoch said during the ceremony, attended by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, among others.
Describing the Indian Museums artefacts as immensely valuable to the whole world, Banerjee said her government will soon undertake restoration and renovation of 166 district-level and rural museums in Bengal.
Governor M.K. Narayanan, however, expressed concern over the recent decline in footfall at the Indian Museum.
“The Indian Museum had come to be seen as something old, dusty, boring and barely relevant. Footfall had declined, and compared unfavourably with other museums, especially in the West,” Narayanan said.
He expressed happiness over the renovation work of the museum.
“Given the variety and nature of the exhibits and the modern layout, the restored Indian Museum compares favourably with iconic museums,” he said.
Envisioning the future of the Indian Museum as the “epitome of modernity in antiquity” Narayanan said the museum will not only continue to be relevant in the next hundred years, but also become a place that people would look at with awe, where one could learn about history and culture.