Message from Shri. Narendra Kumar Sinha, Secretary, Ministry of Culture, Government of India

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India is home to exquisite art collections that represent five thousand years of Indian history, traditions and culture. Indian art is manifested in paintings and manuscripts, sculptures, ethnographic collections, costumes and textiles, coins and jewellery, photographs and prints. These collections are displayed in major national museums in Delhi, Kolkata, Mumbai, Hyderabad and Allahabad that are governed by the Ministry of Culture, Government of India.

In 2009, the Ministry of Culture initiated a thorough survey of its museums which resulted in the 14 point Museum Reform Programmes that highlighted the need to enhance collection management, exhibitions, visitor experience and interpretation and use of multi-technological approaches to sharing and understanding collections. The Reform programmes amply revealed that among other urgent initiatives, one was to utilize the vast reach of the world wide web to share Indian collections and the knowledge embedded in them with the people of the world. This would not only reinstate the pride among Indians in their rich and plural culture but also attract world audiences to understand India better.       

It was with this foresight that the Ministry of Culture embarked on a project to digitize the collections in its museums, whether on display or in stores, to provide better access and information on various themes, national and regional histories and the rich craftsmanship that is reflected in Indian art. Digitized resources from 10 major museums – National Museum, New Delhi, National Gallery of Modern Art, Delhi, Mumbai and Bangalore, Salar Jung Museum, Hyderabad, Allahabad Museum, Allahabad, Indian Museum, Kolkata, Victoria Memorial Hall, Kolkata, ASI site Museum Velha Goa and Nagarjunakonda are now available on this newly created website so that visitors can access collections across museums in India on one portal. This special website that has been created for art enthusiasts, students, scholars, museum visitors and tourists planning to visit India, will provide an engaging prelude to what lies in our museums. It provides a visual glimpse of objects and their details so that interested scholars can use this information for their research or request more details from respective museums.

I am glad that the Ministry of Culture is involved in the work of modernization of our Museums and in bringing them closer to the public. This important initiative will open our museum collections and make them more accessible to people from all walks of life. The format of the website in particular will allow the public to enjoy collections online and provide a key opportunity for our museums to connect better with their audiences.

I congratulate all those associated with this project for their endeavours.

- Narendra Kumar Sinha