Nehru does not erase, it makes Nehru-plus: NMML director

Written by Divya A
| New Delhi

Published: August 28, 2018 3:42:49 am

The Nehru Memorial Museum and the library in New Delhi. File The Nehru Memorial Museum and the library in New Delhi. (File)

Following the letter from Prime Minister Narendra Modi, former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, expressing his concern about an "agenda" to change "the nature and character" of Nehru Memorial Museum and Library (NMML) and the Teen Murti complex NMML director Shakti Sinha told The Indian Express: "I respect the opinion of the former prime minister, but I would humbly say that the objections are somewhat misplaced."

"Even in the current format, less than 2 percent of the books, documents and other items in our repository are about Jawaharlal Nehru, and when we extend the repository to other PMs, we will add this to Nehru. Nehru is destroying, we will make it Nehru-plus, "he added.

In the letter sent last week, Singh called former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee and said that under his six-year mandate "absolutely no attempt had been made to change the nature and character of the NMML". The letter came in the midst of the controversy surrounding the government's plans to set up a museum for all the PMs within the Teen Murti complex.

Sinha, who served as Vajpayee's private secretary, said: "Nehru was a democrat, and it is only fitting that in the spirit of democracy we enlarge the image and focus on the office of the prime minister rather than on a prime minister. . & # 39;

During the 43rd general general meeting of NMML in July, under the chairmanship of Interior Minister Rajnath Singh, six attendees had objected to the construction of the proposed museum. These include the congress leaders Mallikarjun Kharge and Jairam Ramesh.

An important claim was whether such a museum should be housed on the NMML site or outside it. "We are against it because this is the legacy of Jawaharlal Nehru and associated with the liberation movement.It can not be destroyed," Kharge had said.Ramesh had called the move "devils, meant only to erase Jawaharlal Nehru".

Even if a final decision was not taken before the opposition, sources at the Ministry of Culture, under which the project will be executed, said "The plan is complete and PMO has approved the draft." We collect content on all PM & # 39; s and continue with the museum. "

A Surya Prakash, another member of the NMML Executive Council, said: "Teen Murti Estate and Teen Murti Bhavan (Nehru's residence and now the museum) are separate entities and an attempt is often made to state that these are the same, the library was later built on the site, then the planetarium came, and some land was given to the police in Delhi, and there is room to add more to the complex. "

Sinha also said that they have lowered the project costs of the museum. Initially, according to the concept note, the costs were estimated at Rs 270 crore. "The revised costs are around 150 Rs," Sinha said.

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