Amritsar’s Partition Museum To Relive A Generation’s Sacrifices.
Writer and former media professional , Kishwar Desai is master mind behind the Yadgar-e-Taqseem, or the Memories of Partition museum. The Arts and Cultural Heritage Trust, registered in India, will run the museum. Resources in India, Pakistan, Bangladesh and the U.K will be collaboratively used to enrich the museum’s collection.
“We would like to commemorate Partition and the sacrifices made by people on both sides of the border. It is time we lifted the veil of silence around Partition and really understood it,” said Ms. Desai at a consultation here on Tuesday for academics from the London School of Economics and the School of Oriental and African Studies, representatives from the British Library, supporters from the Indian Diaspora and historians.
“We would also like it to be a museum, which helps us understand and heal the wounds. People must come out with a sense of hope and not despair, and feel it must never happen again,” she said.
It will be housed in a old colonial building provided by Punjab government near the Golden Temple in an syncretic cultural region. In an effort to contextualize the museum’s offerings, which will include documents, oral histories, photographs, films, art, literature and film and other sources relating to Partition . It will have a digital section and a resource website.
The Trust is hoping to attract oral accounts from the fast disappearing Partition Generation.
In Pakistan, the Trust is tying up with citizen’s archives and historians working on the area. In the UK, the Trust hopes to establish a formal collaboration with the British Library and National Archives at Kew, which together hold a great part of the official documents relating to the period.
Shakuntala Lal, a former journalist whose own family was displaced through the Partition has made a donation to the trust. A second donation was made at the consultation by Samir Jassal a third generation British Indian Sikh.
The trust is trying to capture from the citizen’s archive and historian working on this area in Pakistan. Also they are trying set up a collaboration with the British Library and National Archives at Kew, for the official documents relating to the period.
The Trust will hold a series of exhibitions and seminars on Partition in India and the United Kingdom in the run up to the inauguration of the museum. An exhibition of 3000 pieces of Partition art is to be held in Mumbai in the middle of next year.
The Trust aims to raise £ 1 million through donations, Ms. Ahluwalia says, to get the museum up and running for the first year. The first donation to the Trust has come from the family of Shakuntala Lal, a former journalist whose own family was displaced through the Partition. A second donation was made at the consultation by Samir Jassal a third generation British Indian Sikh.
For more materials the Trust has appealed publicly for letters , photographs and oral history on Partition. The museum project website is http://www.thepartitionmuseumproject.com.
Original article published in The Hindu
Latest posts by Arindam Ghosh (see all)
- Amritsar’s Partition Museum To Relive A Generation’s Sacrifices. - December 4, 2015