The Martyr’s Column at Gandhi Smriti Museum
Living in Delhi, the capital of India, brings with it certain advantages. Delhiites have access to a plethora of cultural activities, world-class museums, and phenomenal shopping.
I often explore lesser-known parts of the city with the members of my Women’s International Club. Having seen the Sunder Bagh Nursery and the National Museum, we recently visited the Gandhi Smriti Museum. I regret not seeing this wonderful place in the heart of the city earlier!
Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi stayed at Birla House on Tees January Marg, New Delhi, for 5 months in 1947-48. While here, he counselled thousands of people affected by the terrible partition of the country. He chose this place due to its central location and because it could be accessed by people of all religions and castes. One evening, while heading for his evening prayer, he was shot dead by a member of the Hindu Mahasabha, Nathuram Godse. The government of India bought the building and converted it to a museum in 1973, to commemorate the life and work of the ‘Father of the Indian Nation’.
Read on to know 5 reasons why you must visit the Gandhi Smriti Museum on Tees January Marg, with your children or even just on your own
- LEARN ABOUT THE FATHER OF THE INDIAN NATION:
Whatever people may think of M.K. Gandhi and his methods, his steadfast belief in non-violence helped the country attain independence from British Rule. He is called the ‘Father of the Nation’ for good reason. Gandhiji is a representation of India to the rest of the world, yet his simple and relatable philosophy is rapidly being forgotten at home.
We must pass his legacy to the generations below us, and the easiest way to do this is by showing his life’s work to them. It is now more vital than ever before to spread his message of positivity.
Gandhiji’s room maintained just as it was
- INFORMATIVE DISPLAY WITH PHOTOS AND CRISP WRITE-UPS:
The well-lit, well-ventilated ground floor showcases dozens of black and white photographs, with succinctly explained write-ups. Many of these are direct quotations of the Mahatma, which ring true even today.
From here, you can explore the section dedicated to intricately made dioramas (3D miniature models set against a painting), which explain major events of Gandhiji’s life. The wealth of detail in these artworks will impress everyone. The final section of the ground floor has the room where Gandhiji stayed in his last days, preserved in the same pristine condition he left it. You can explore the route taken by Gandhiji from the room to the prayer ground where he was assassinated.
Even the least academic among you and your children, will enjoy re-living history in this interactive and informative manner.
This artefact is part of the Multimedia Section. It plays Gandhiji’s favourite hymn when you run your hands across it.
- INTERACTIVE MULTIMEDIA SECTION THAT WILL KEEP CHILDREN THOROUGHLY ENTERTAINED:
The first floor of the building, houses an innovative and interactive ‘Eternal Gandhi’ multimedia section. Inaugurated in 2005, this portion of the museum will particularly appeal to young minds. They can touch screens and learn Gandhiji’s favourite hymns, play instruments to hear anecdotes from his life, and watch movie clippings of him through interesting devices.
I was most impressed with this section of the museum with cutting-edge technology and evident creativity. It is an ideal place to take your children during summer vacations. They can be away from the sweltering heat while enjoying themselves and learning about their past.
The book shop in the museum
- SUPPORT THE KHADI INDUSTRY BY SHOPPING AT THE IN-HOUSE STORE:
Gandhiji always promoted the Indian handicrafts industry, focusing on khadi cloth. Hence, the government runs a cooperative store in the Museum premises where one can pick up several items made from khadi.
Another place for to practice retail therapy is the bookshop, where one can choose from a variety of options.
- SERENE AND BEAUTIFUL GROUNDS
Counteracting the violence of Gandhiji’s death, is the serenity of the grounds where it took place. The beautifully manicured lawns are a treat for the senses, especially in cooler weather. The Martyr’s Column marking the place where Gandhiji was shot, is the best place to pay your respects to him.
It’s unfortunate that this was my first visit to this fantastic museum and I’ve vowed to change that. I will re-visit with my son soon, would you like to join me?
INFORMATION ABOUT GANDHI SMRITI MUSEUM:
ADDRESS: Gandhi Smriti and Darshan Samiti, 5 Tees Janvari Marg, New Delhi
DAYS & TIME: Tuesday –Sunday (Mondays and second Saturdays closed)
10:00 a.m.- 1:30 p.m.
2:00 p.m. – 5:30 p.m.
A special prayer meeting is held every year on Gandhiji’s birth anniversary (October 2) and death anniversary (January 30) at exactly 5:17 p.m. which is the time he was assassinated.
ENTRANCE FEE: Free
This blog is a part of the #LetsBlogWithPri Campaign hosted by Prisha Lalwani from www.mummasaurus.com. I would like to thank Sweta Kachhap for introducing me in the blog train. You can read her blog here. I would like to introduce Disha Mehrotra. You can read her blog here.
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