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‘Sadbhavna a symbolic gesture,Modi must apologise to fill rifts’

Planning Commission member Syeda Hameed,who was in Ahmedabad on Sunday to inaugurate Conflictorium (a museum of conflicts),said despite Chief Minister Narendra Modi’s “symbolic gestures” of Sadbhavna fast,communal rifts still persist in Gujarat.

Written by Express News Service | Ahmedabad |
April 15, 2013 3:42:18 am

Planning Commission member Syeda Hameed,who was in Ahmedabad on Sunday to inaugurate Conflictorium (a museum of conflicts),said despite Chief Minister Narendra Modi’s “symbolic gestures” of Sadbhavna fast,communal rifts still persist in Gujarat. “Modi needs to swallow his hubris and apologise not once,but repeatedly to fill communal gaps,” she said.

When asked if Modi’s Sadbhavna fast has helped fill the communal rifts and if he should seek an apology,Hameed stated,“One symbolic gesture of fast does not fill the contours that are deep embedded in generations. Such efforts need to be repeated again and again.”

She reiterated,“What makes any politician,statesman or a national leader rise above his stature is to seek an apology for the rifts that have been created in the society. Indians respect humility which is taught by every religion and also to negate your self and say sorry.”

Speaking about the museum,she said that for the first time Conflictorium has presented the concept of conflicts to the society,particularly in Gujarat that has been a witness to repeated conflicts. “Probably,the concept of conflictorium is unique in its own way that gives a hope of peace through conflicts. Also,strength to people to apologise for their mistakes,” she added.

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What is unique about the museum is that the entire house has no resemblance of a regular museum with no shining walls and no glass enclosures,but old patchy walls that too reflect conflicts. Unlike other museums,one can touch and feel the things on display. There is a sorry tree at one of the corners. One can apologise on a piece of paper and leave the message on the tree.

Avni Sethi,the curator of Conflictorium,said it is a participatory museum that addresses the theme of conflict and seeks to act as a third space to create a dialogue through art.

Taking visitors to various sections of the Gool Lodge that houses the museum,she explained the relevance and idea behind each one of them. The museum was inaugurated by Hameed in the presence of various dignitaries from Ahmedabad.

While Hameed believed the museum will immortalise the history of communal conflicts in Gujarat,Gagan Sethi,Avni’s father,hoped it serves as an antidote to the society. The museum is a collaborative project of Navsarjan,Janvikas and Centre for Social Justice founded by Gagan.

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