Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Saturday claimed that several important aspects of the country’s history were overlooked by historians who wrote about it after Independence.
Speaking at a cultural event at Kolkata’s Old Currency Building, Modi said, “It is unfortunate that during the British rule and even after Independence, the country’s history overlooked several important chapters and aspects of our country. Gurudev Rabindranath Tagore, writing in 1903, had said that India’s history is not what students study for examinations.
“Some people came from outside, killed their own relatives, brothers for the sake of claiming the throne… this is not the history of our country. I am not saying this. This was said by Gurudev himself. He had said in this history, it is not mentioned what the people of the country were doing. Didn’t they have any existence?” he said.
During the event, Modi dedicated four refurbished heritage buildings of the city — the Old Currency Building, the Belvedere House, the Metcalfe House and the Victoria Memorial Hall — to the nation.
He stressed on the need to show the country’s heritage and culture to the world and called for the preservation and modernisation of various museums and heritage buildings.
Modi also announced that five iconic museums of the country will now match international standards. “We have to show our country’s heritage and culture before the world. We have to make India a hub of heritage tourism. It has been decided that five iconic museums of the country will be made of international standards,” he said.
The Prime Minister said that a museum must be set up to document the contribution of Bengali freedom fighters. “A museum called Biplobi Bharat should be established, in which Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose, Aurobindo Ghosh, Rash Behari Bose, Khudiram Bose, Deshbandhu, Bagha Jatin, Binoy, Badal, Dinesh, every such great freedom fighter should be given a place,” he said.
After attending the cultural programme, Modi shared the stage with West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee at Millennium Park, where he had gone to inaugurate a light and sound show. Governor Jagdeep Dhankhar was also present.
Later, the Prime Minister travelled in a vessel on the river Hooghly and made his way towards Belur Math – the headquarters of Ramkrishna Mission. A follower of Swami Vivekananda, Modi was to spend the night there.
On Sunday, Modi is scheduled to address students at Belur Math. Later, he will attend the Kolkata Port Trust’s 150th anniversary celebrations at Netaji Indoor Stadium. Governor Dhankhar and Banerjee are also scheduled to be present at the event.