Published On: Sat, Jan 11th, 2020

History we read has no reference to common people: PM Modi

Kolkata: Regretting that salient chapters in Indian history have not found place in the way the subject has been dealt with during the British rule and even after independence, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Saturday said there is no reference to what the common people were doing in different periods.

We are also considering developing the Indian government’s mint here into a museum of coinage and commerce

“It is very unfortunate that during British rule and even after independence the drafting of the country’s history ignored some salient chapters of our history. The history we read has no reference to what the common Indian people were doing during different times. Didn’t they have any existence?” Modi asked after dedicating four renovated heritage buildings to the nation.

The Prime Minister said lot of things connect to Indian history have remained in the wilderness, while some writers have confined it to mere tales of power struggle, violence and battles of succession.

“Lot of things connected to India’s history have remained in the wilderness. If you look at our history and tradition, you will find some people have confined our history to power struggle, violence and succession battles,” he said.

Modi said it was very important to keep the spirit of national consciousness alive and carry it to the coming generations in those periods of instability and amidst the environment of violence.

“Decade after decade, century after century, who did this job? Our arts, literature and music, our intellectuals, saints and philosophers carried out this job,” he said addressing the gathering at the Old Currency Building.

He said the influence of saints and intellectuals could be found in every field of India.

“These individuals, their ideals, and various manifestations of arts and literature, enriched our history in their own way. You know how great people led the biggest social reforms in India,” he said.

Describing politics and military power as temporary, the Prime Minister said on the contrary, popular ideas expressed through arts and culture are permanent.

“So it is very crucial for India and Indians to preserve and maintain our own rich history and heritage, because that ir what sets us apart from other nations.”

Modi said one can learn something or the other from every culture in the world.

“But we have to keep in mind that it doesn’t cast a shadow over Indian culture,” he said.

The Centre has decided to make five iconic museums of the country as per international standards, said the prime minister on this occasion.

“It has been decided to make the five iconic museums in the country as per international standards,” Modi said after dedicating to the nation four heritage buildings which have been renovated and refurbished.

The project is s being launched with the Indian Museum, one of the oldest museums in the world.

Apart from it, the Delhi, Chenani, Hyderabad and Srinagar museums are also being upgraded, the Prime Minister said, stressing the need for beautification and renovation of the country’s iconic structures.

Underscoring the importance of creating the required resources for these museums’ maintenance and management, he said the government was considering establishment of the Indian Institute of Heritage Conservation and giving it a deemed university status.

“We are also considering developing the Indian government’s mint here into a museum of coinage and commerce,” Modi said during his address at the function organised in the OId Currency Builing, one of the four renovated heritage structures.

The other three are Belvedere House, Metcalfe House and Victoria Memorial Hall.

The renovation has been undertaken by the Union Culture Ministry which has refurbished the iconic galleries with new exhibitions apart from curating the old galleries.

The renovation exercise is part of the ministry’s initiative to develop cultural spaces around iconic buildings in various metro cities in the country. To begin with the cities of Kolkata, Delhi, Mumbai, Ahmedabad and Varanasi are being taken up under this project.

Modi said from time to time, the subject of making Belvedere House a Museum of the World has cropped up.

“Now our efforts are in the direction of realisation of dream.”

The Prime Minister said it was not proper that two of the five galleries of Victoria Memorial Hall were shut for long.

“For some time efforts are on to open them. My appeal is the third gallery should have place for the freedom movement in Bengal”.

He said a museum called Biplabi Bharat will be made in which freedom fighters of Bengal such as Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose, Aurobindo Ghosh, Rash Behari Bose, Deshbandhu Chitta Ranjan Das, Benoy-Badal-Dinesh (Benoy Basu, Badal Gupta and Dinesh Gupta) should get some place.

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