On 16/05/2023, a heated exchange of verbal confrontations unfurled between the Congress and BJP regarding the rechristening of the Nehru Memorial Museum and Library (NMML), located within the premises of Teen Murti Bhavan in the capital city. It was official renamed as the Prime Minister’s Museum and Library Society from 14th August 2023. The decision of rename it was taken during the month of June.
According to the Culture Ministry, the Museum represents a harmonious fusion that commences within the modernized and revitalized Nehru Museum edifice. This structure has been comprehensively enhanced with state-of-the-art exhibits elucidating the life and invaluable contributions of Jawaharlal Nehru.
Residing within a novel edifice, the museum subsequently embarks on narrating the saga of how our Prime Ministers adeptly steered the nation through diverse challenges, thereby fostering comprehensive national advancement. The statement elucidated that the museum pays homage to the entire spectrum of Prime Ministers, effectively democratizing the repository of institutional remembrance.
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What is Nehru Memorial Museum ?
Once it was recognized as Flagstaff House in the era of British Raj, this structure formerly served as the abode for the Commander-in-Chief of British forces. Post-Independence, its role transitioned into being the designated residence for Prime Minister Nehru. Subsequent to demise of Nehru, the building underwent a transformation into a library and museum.
Why Nehru Memorial Museum name change?
As per analysis of media report, when the Narendra Modi government came to power, a Pradhanmantri Sangrahalaya was set up on the premises to chronicle achievements of all the Prime Ministers, starting from Jawaharlal Nehru to Prime Minister Modi. This museum was inaugurated last year.
Based on an analysis of media reports, upon assuming power, the Narendra Modi government established a “Pradhanmantri Sangrahalaya” on the premises. This museum was curated to document the accomplishments of all Prime Ministers, spanning from Jawaharlal Nehru to Prime Minister Modi. The inauguration of this museum took place last year. Finally on 14 August 2023, Nehru Memorial Museum and Library Society has been rename as Prime Minister’s Museum and Library Society.
Response of leaders to renaming of Nehru Museum
The renaming of the Nehru Memorial Museum and Library (NMML) has ignited a fervent dispute between the BJP and the opposition Congress. While the Congress asserts that the motive behind altering the name of the revered institution is to manipulate the historical significance of the nation’s inaugural Prime Minister, Jawaharlal Nehru, the BJP has countered with allegations of dynastic inclinations.
Congress leader Jairam Ramesh said:
On 16/08/2023, Jairam Ramesh, a prominent figure within the Congress, conveyed that Prime Minister Modi exhibits a sense of insecurity in relation to Jawaharlal Nehru. Ramesh expounded, “Modi’s sole agenda revolves around negating, misrepresenting, besmirching, and undermining Nehru’s legacy. He has substituted ‘N’ with ‘P,’ where the ‘P’ signifies not principle but pettiness and irritability.”
He further emphasized, “Nonetheless, Modi cannot diminish Nehru’s monumental contributions to the struggle for independence and his remarkable achievements in constructing the democratic, secular, scientific, and liberal bedrock of the Indian nation-state. Sadly, these very foundations are presently facing challenges from Mr. Modi and his supporters.”
Ramesh concluded by asserting, “Nehru’s enduring legacy will remain visible to the world, continuing to serve as an inspiration for forthcoming generations.”
Senior Congress leader Rahul Gandhi Said:
On 17/08/2023, Rahul Gandhi strongly criticized the government’s decision to rename the Nehru Museum as the Prime Minister’s Museum, highlighting that Nehru’s renown extends beyond his name and is rooted in his substantial contributions. Rahul Gandhi’s remarks emerged a mere day after a vocal altercation between the BJP and Congress on this matter. The Congress inferred that the shift from “N to P” symbolized the BJP’s lack of magnanimity, while the BJP countered by characterizing it as mere lamentation.
In addition to the aforementioned developments, numerous opposition leaders vociferously expressed their dissent against this action. Congress’s general secretary, Jairam Ramesh, utilized Twitter on Wednesday to convey, “Mr. Modi carries an extensive bundle of apprehensions, complexes, and insecurities, particularly in matters concerning our inaugural and longest-serving Prime Minister. His exclusive focus has been to negate, distort, vilify, and dismantle Nehru and the Nehruvian legacy.”
“He (Modi) replaced ‘N’ with ‘P.’ However, that ‘P’ signifies not principle but rather pettiness and annoyance,” Ramesh added.