Museums must reach out to wider public: Bengal governor

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Kolkata, July 5 (IANS) West Bengal Governor K.N. Tripathi on Wednesday said museums can no longer act as exalted custodians of the past and must reach out to the wider public.

“Museums in today’s world face many new challenges. In the 21st century, when the rapid advancement of technology has brought the whole world at our fingertips, museums can no longer act as exalted custodians of our past but they must reach out to the wider public and function as a space where one can educate himself in an attractive and engaging way,” Tripathi said in his address at the Indian Museum here during the launch of the book “Lives of Objects: Stories From the Indian Museum”.

He said the museums play a critically important complementary role to our schools, colleges and universities. “Especially, history whose visualisation we tend to miss in textbooks can really come alive through museum objects if their stories can be told well,” he said.

Tripathi, who is the Chairman of the Board of Trustees of the Indian Museum, said museums should narrate the story of India in an interesting way.

“Our museums can and should, thus, function as visual and educational spaces in which story of India can be told in an interesting way. I am glad to observe that the Indian Museum has sought to do this through its permanent displays and temporary exhibitions and various outreach and public programmes,” he said, adding the trustees fully support the museum in its endeavours.

Founded in 1814 at the Asiatic Society of Bengal (now the Asiatic Society), Indian Museum is the oldest and the largest multipurpose museum in the Asia-Pacific region.

–IANS

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