Rs 42-cr Mission to preserve Mahatma legacy
By Anubhuti Vishnoi
Having recently bought thousands of letters and documents related to Mahatma Gandhi, including those exchanged with architect Hermann Kallenbach, the Ministry of Culture is set to take to Cabinet a proposal to establish the Gandhi Heritage Sites Mission.
Being planned since 2010, the Rs 42-crore Mission is aimed at conservation of 39 core sites associated with Gandhi and another 2,000 sites visited by the Mahatma in India and abroad.
Frontrunners to head the Mission as chairperson are Ela Bhatt — the founder of Self Employed Women’s Association of India and decorated with the Padma Bhushan, Radcliffe Medal and Magsaysay award — and Sailesh Kumar Bandopadhya, another Padma Bhushan awardee and a Gandhian associated with the Khadi movement.
The Mission is being set up on the basis of recommendations made by a panel in 2006 to suggest measures to preserve Gandhi’s legacy. The panel was headed by Gandhi’s grandson Gopalkrishna Gandhi.
The Mission, sources said, is aimed at identifying, collating and assessing information on Gandhi-related heritage material for its management and deployment. It will determine conservation methodology and priorities of the heritage material, consider documents and objects from the point of view of archival storage and museology.
It will work on ways towards dissemination of archival material through a web portal, publications and audio-visual material. It will operate through a number of panels comprising experts.