New Delhi |
Updated: February 23, 2014 11:57:30 pm
QUEST: A schools’ initiative from The Indian Express
Quest organised a heritage walk at GANDHI SMRITI with the students of Delhi Public School, R K Puram
School trips are always fun but this trip was not only enjoyable but also very informative. It was my first visit to Gandhi Smriti and I was very impressed by the way the volunteers conducted the tour and guided us. They told us about how Gandhi Smriti was a place symbolising peace and serenity. People from all over the country come to this place to pay respects to the Father of the Nation. At the museum, we learnt about Mahatma Gandhi’s life and discovered facts, which until then had been unknown to us. The gardens were very beautiful. We took a stroll with our classmates and the guide. All in all, it was a great trip and I cannot wait to visit the place again.
* Pragati Sinha, X-C
Recently, on a school trip, we visited Gandhi Smriti. The trip commenced with a visit to ‘Martyr’s Column’, where Gandhiji was assassinated. There were footprints made of stone, signifying the steps of the Father of the Nation in his final moments. Next, we visited a room, where Gandhiji lived in his final days. On display were some of his personal belongings and inspirational quotes, which will continue to be a source of pride and inspiration for future generations too. The best part was a tour of the museum. We were first shown a short presentation of the fateful, tragic day when Gandhiji was assassinated. The tour of the museum was educative and fascinating. One of the incredible features on display was the Tree of Unity, depicted by a group of people holding hands, which would light up a pole and, if any one broke the connection, the lights would go off. Another spectacle was a beam, which was divided into rotating segments, each displaying a unique ideal that Gandhiji believed in.
* Sonakshi Saini, X-C
On January 30, 1948, a great man left us. His name was Mahatma Gandhi. He was the man who led India to independence from the British. Gandhiji was a very noble man and is still respected all over the world. He believed in ‘karma’ and in the power of truth. He lived the last 144 days of his life at Gandhi Smriti. Gandhi Smriti, formerly known as Birla House or Birla Bhawan, is a museum dedicated to Mahatma Gandhi, situated on Tees January Road, in New Delhi. Fortunately, I got a chance to visit the place as my school organised a trip to the place. It is a very well-maintained place. We got to know a lot more about Gandhiji there. There is a great museum, which makes use of latest technology. Each segment preaches Gandhiji’s message to the people. The place is very serene and informative. We also saw many short clippings on Gandhiji’s life, which made us respect him even more.
* Harsh Bhoot, X-C
A towering statue of Mahatma Gandhi, with the inscription ‘My life is my message’ engraved on its pedestal, greeted us at the entrance. The lush green lawn, which was earlier used as a prayer ground by the Mahatma, has a string of concrete footsteps, which culminate at a small pavilion which marks the spot where Gandhiji was supposedly gunned down by Nathuram Godse. Inside the Gandhi Smriti, the ground floor has been dedicated to Gandhiji’s life, aptly showcased by a collection of photographs and information.
Next, there is a room where Gandhiji lived, which has been preserved as Gandhiji left it with his humble
belongings such as spectacles, charkha and chappals. The top floor is a multimedia museum, completely distinct from the floor below. However, it does manage to capture all the Gandhian ideals. The Tree of Unity, for instance, which lights up on holding hands, epitomises the strength of unity.
* Khushboo Upreti, X-B
The martyr’S Column stands a metre or two away from the paved ground, on an elevated platform, with a roof and a boundary wall. The words “Hey Ram” are inscribed in Devanagari across the face of the structure — the final words of the Father of the Nation. The thing about Gandhi Smriti is that even amidst the noise of the visitors and the crowded corridors, the text on the boards hung from the walls seem to draw its observer away into a different world. They seem to provide stability, an unfamiliar sense of pride and serenity.
The short animation, which plays out on the wall of the staircase hall above the miniature version of the memorial, is beautifully executed and doesn’t dramatise the event’s grief.
The occasional tour guide can be an irritant with their penchant for not letting one use the interactive exhibits, but that doesn’t take away from the overall experience.
* Shubhankar Mukherjee, X
Gandhi Smriti (formerly known as Birla House) is a place where Mahatma Gandhi spent the last 144 days of his life and was assassinated by Nathuram Godse on January 30, 1948. The vast campus of Gandhi Smriti was acquired by the government of India in 1971 and has been converted into a museum and shrine to Gandhiji’s life and ideals. The garden comprises of concrete footsteps leading to a memorial, which marks the place where the Mahatma was killed.
The corridors, beside the shrine and within the main building, recount Gandhiji’s life and the history of the Independence movement. Gandhiji’s sayings have been placed all around the campus and they continue to embolden visitors to face the difficulties of life. Then there is the room, where he lived and did his daily work during his last days. The next level comprises of completely modern and sophisticated interactive exhibits.
* Priyanshu Kumar Jain, X-B
Recently, I paid a visit to Gandhi Smriti, also known as Birla House, through our school. On reaching the place, we were made to gather in the puja mandap. From there, we walked along the gallery, simultaneously reading all the quotes of Mahatma Gandhi that were displayed there. We saw the place where Gandhiji was shot by Nathuram Godse on January 30, 1948. A lot of things which belonged to Mahatma Gandhi have been preserved at the place. We were shown a documentry, which comprised of an animated scene when Gandhiji was assassinated. After the documentry was over, we were divided into groups and taken upstairs into the main museum. There was an instrument which, when we spoke into a mike, played according to the tone of our voice. After that, we saw a series of exhibits like Mahatma Gandhi and Kasturba Gandhi’s statues, charkhas, a light that lit only when a group of people joined hands. We were also shown the timeline of Gandhiji life. After that, I came down and entered another room, in which there were exhibits showing different stages in the Mahatma’s life and, finally, a large statue of him outside.
* Manan Raizada, X-B
A school trip to Gandhi Smriti for Class X students was organised in January. We got a chance to know about the life of the Father of the Nation. Gandhi Smriti, formerly known as Birla House or Birla Bhawan, is a museum dedicated to Mahatma Gandhi situated on Tees January Road. It is here that Mahatma Gandhi spent the last 144 days of his life and was assassinated on January 30, 1948. It was originally the house of Indian business tycoons, the Birla family. It is now known as the Eternal Gandhi Multi-Media Museum. The Martyr’s Column now marks the place, where Gandhiji was assassinated. We also saw a three-minute film based on Gandhiji’s last day and the museum at the place has a number of artifacts associated with Gandhij’s life and death. We also saw Gandhiji’s well- preserved spectacles, walking stick, his room and office etc. It was a great opportunity for us to see Gandhi Smriti as every aspect of his life has been so beautifully presented that it made us even more anxious to know about Gandhiji’s life.
* Mehak Tanwar, X-B
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