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West Bengal govt plans to convert Tagore’s ancestral house into a museum

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The West Bengal government is planning to preserve ‘Jorasanko Thakurbari’, the ancestral house of Rabindranath Tagore in North Kolkara by converting it into a museum. “We are thinking on how to preserve and convert the mansion where Tagore was born and spent most of his childhood, into a museum,” said Mamata Banerjee, chief minister, Kolkata. She referred to Shakespeare’s birthplace in England which has been converted into a museum and draws tourists from all across the globe. “This should be converted into a museum to preserve our cultural heritage and Tagore’s legacy for the coming generations. The state government will extend all possible help and support in this regard,” she added. Preliminary discussions have been initiated by the state’s higher education department in this regard.

Prof. Chinmoy Guha, vice-chancellor of Rabindra Bharati University, which is housed in this building itself, said,  “As the first step towards this the state government has decided to introduce light and sound shows at Thakurbari, which will chronicle the life and times of Tagore. It will recreate the magic of the nineteenth century. Besides, attracting Tagore admirers, it will also be a major tourist attraction in the city,” he said.

Meanwhile, coinciding with the culmination of the year-long 150th birth anniversary celebrations of the poet who penned India’s national anthem, the Centre announced a grant of Rs 150 crore to revive and restore the glory of Vishwa Bharati University, which was set up by Tagore himself. Welcoming the gesture, the teaching-community of the central university said, “The funds will be utilised for setting up certain pending projects of the University related to research and studies.” They feel that the funds will help in projecting “Vishwa Bharati” as an international centre of learning and will help in attracting both domestic and foreign students and tourists from different parts of the globe.

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