Posted on : 19-12-2015
United Nations Organisation(UNO) selected this museum as the Peace Museums Worldwide. Open Air Theatre and a library have been established on the northern side of this complex. This museum has on display original letters written by Mahatma to several important persons, Illustrations about Freedom Movement in India, Biography of Gandhi, artifacts of Gandhi, etc. This museum is a registered society and is governed by Executive and General Body Members. Jawaharlal Nehru, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr & Mrs. Coretta Scott King, Jayaprakash Narayanan, Dr. S. Radhakrishnan, V.V. Giri, Neelam Sanjiva Reddy, Dalai Lama, Miss. Anita Bose and Zakir Hussain are the eminent persons who had visited this museum. Gandhi Museuems are also established at Patna, Barrackpore (near Calcutta), New Delhi, Mumbai, Wardha and Ahmedabad.
Rani Mangammal constructed Tamukkam Palace during 1670 AD. This palace was later occupied by Carnatic Nawab, East India Company, etc. The British District Collector of Madurai occupied this palace as the official residence. After Independence Tamil Nadu State Government had handed over 13 Acres of land to the All India Gandhi Smarak Nidhi for the purpose of establishing the First Memorial Museum for the Father of the Nation here.
Mahatma Gandhi was assassinated by Nathuram Godse on 30.01.1948. Citizens made an appeal to the Indian Government to erect a museum for the Father. Mahatma Gandhi Memorial Trust was established for this purpose and several people across the nation made their contributions to the trust. The first museum was established at Tamukkam Palace. Jawaharlal Nehru, the then Prime Minister of India, unveiled this museum to the public on 15.04.1959.
‘Relics and Replicas’, ‘Visual Biography of Mahatma Gandhi’ and ‘India Fights for Freedom’ are the three major museum galleries. The Coming of the White Men, The Challenge From Tamil Nadu, Mysore Resists, The Sikh and the Maratha Resistance, Wages of Slavery, The Volcano Erupts, The First Shot, The Revolt Spreads, The Birth of the Indian National Congress, The Moderates and The Extremists, The Partition of Bengal and The Aftermath, The Cult of the Bomb, The Limits of Constitutionalism, The Gandhi Era Begins, The Massacre at Jalianwala Bagh, The Challenges of the Constructive Programme, Trying Times, The Salt Satyagraha - The March to Dandi, The Round Table Conference and the Aftermath, Congress Ministries and the Aftermath, Quit India, Tamil Nadu in the Quit India Movement, Other Vallant Struggles, On the Eve of Independence and India Becomes Free are the content titles found at India Fights for Freedom.
Activities at Gandhi Museum:
Gandhi Museum Activities are Periodical Gandhi Memorial Lectures, Mahatma Gandhi Birthday celebration, Yoga, Meditation, Panayama and Holistic Training, Observance of Gandhi Martyrdom Day, Vinoba-Bharathi Day, Freedom Fighters Day, Gandhi Child Centre, Summer Training Course on Nonviolence & Gandhian Thought, Kasturba Gandhi Memorial Day, Self Employment Courses, Hindi and Sanskrit Courses and Weekly Inter-Faith Prayer.
Library at the Museum:
A library was established on the northern portion of the building. Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru unveiled this library. It is one of the biggest libraries in South India for Gandhian thoughts. The library boasts 32,000 books and periodicals, Manuscripts Photostat copies, etc. About 20,000 persons are utilizing this library annually.
Geographical position of Gandhi Museum:
Gandhi Museum at Madurai is located at 9.929952, 78.138444 or 9°55'47.8"N 78°08'18.4"E.