CPI(ML), CPI and CPI(M) State Secretaries of Bihar issued a statement warning the Bihar Government to stop trying to play games with the precious legacy of artefacts of the Patna Museum. The Patna Museum is 100 years old; unfortunately it’s invaluable collection of artefacts and documents – collected through the efforts of tireless collectors – are being handed over to the newly constructed Bihar Museum. This is probably the first time in the world that an established century-old museum is being emptied of artefacts which are then handed over to a museum run by a registered society! Such a move raises apprehensions about the safety and the future of the precious collection.
The Patna Museum housed the Rahul Collection – which comprised material collected by Mahapandit Rahul Sankrityayana during his travels to Tibet and which he gifted to the Patna Museum. Today a part of this collection is being shifted to the Bihar Museum – a decision opposed by members of Rahul Sankrityayan’s family, as well as many scholars and activists.
The Bihar Museum has not been constructed under any Ordinance. So it is not seemly or justified to hand over the invaluable collection of a wholly State-run museum which is a public heritage, to non-government Museum. If the new museum were a new campus of the Patna Museum it would be no problem, but that is not the case.
The Left parties appealed to the Bihar Government that all the artefacts and heritage items be immediately returned to the Patna Museum, which must be safeguarded; and the Bihar Museum be stocked from other sources.