Kolkata, Feb 2 (IANS) Prime Minister Manmohan Singh Sunday said museums are a collection of artefacts and also institutions of learning and knowledge and should, therefore, change their approaches and strategies accordingly.
Inaugurating the bicentenary celebrations of the Indian Museum here, the prime minister said the role and purpose of museums all over the world have undergone transformation.
"Museums in the 19th century were seen as collections - great storehouses of objects, artefacts and pieces of art... In the late 17th century, the word museum simply meant a building used for storing and exhibiting objects illustrative of antiquities, natural history, art and the like."
"It's time, however, this meaning of the word museum came to be overlaid in another connotation: A building dedicated to the pursuit of learning or the art...it is a collection and also institution of learning and the dissemination of learning," Manmohan Singh said.
While asserting that on the whole Indian museums have been successful in disseminating the rich past of our country, the prime minister said: "It is also necessary to ask whether they should not attune their approaches and strategies so that they are more in keeping with the enhanced connotation of the word museum."