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October 2, 2019

Gandhi Bhavan in Kolkata to open as a full-fledged museum

Gandhi Bhavan in Kolkata to open as a full-fledged museum

Gandhi Bhavan, the house in Beleghata, Kolkata where Mahatma Gandhi stayed for a few weeks in 1947 in an effort to quell communal tensions, has now been developed into a full-fledged museum by the Bangla Government. It would be inaugurated today to commemorate his 150th birth anniversary.

When the Mahatma stayed there, it was known as Hyderi Manzil. It was renamed Gandhi Bhavan to honour him.

The Bangla Government under the administration of Mamata Banerjee took over the building in 2018 and has fully upgraded it in an effort to raise awareness among the present generation about Gandhiji and his association with Bangla.

The museum has several divisions including:

* Rare photographs capturing Gandhiji’s life during his 1947 visit to Bangla and stay at Hyderi Manzil

* Articles used by him during the over three-week period of his stay in 1947

* Photographs and articles spanning Gandhiji’s entire life

* Items used by him in the ashram he set up at Sodepur, 10km from Beleghata, to help inmates weave clothes using the charkha

* His correspondence (letters) with people in Noakhali, in present-day Bangladesh, during the period of the turmoil in Kolkata and Noakhali

* Newspaper clippings recording the turbulent phases in Bangla’s history

* Glass case with three swords surrendered to the Mahatma by the rioters

* Audio-visual presentation with voice-over

* Frescoes depicting non-violent movements of Gandhiji on the walls of the museum

* Walls of the central hall are adorned with paintings depicting the 1947 communal violence, made by students of Visva-Bharati University