Sonia Gandhi led Jawaharlal Nehru Memorial Fund (JNMF)has been asked to vacate the Teen Murti complex by 24th September this year. According to reports, the notice was served by the Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs on September 11.
The letter reportedly said that NMML is in ‘dire need of space’ and alleged that the Jawaharlal Nehru Memorial Fund is occupying the premises ‘without any authority of law’.
The letter signed by G.P. Sarkar (Deputy Director, Estates) further said that Jawaharlal Nehru Memorial Fund is also liable to pay damage charges for illegal occupation of the premises from 28.08.1967
While JNMF secretary Suman Dubey in his response to the notice, on 20th September, had contested the ministry’s claim, the vice chairperson Karan Singh called the ministry’s eviction notice outrageous.
However, Shakti Sinha, Nehru Memorial Museum and Library Director, claimed the JNMF was indeed unauthorised as it lacked proper documentation. “Currently, the library is overcrowded. We plan to construct a three-storeyed building on that spot where the administration offices and non-library activities will be shifted. The existing building will be used for library expansion and academic purposes,” he added.
Former prime minister Manmohan Singh, in August 2018, had written to the Prime Minister expressing his concerns over attempts to change the ‘nature and character’ of the Nehru Memorial Museum and Library, and urged him to leave the Teen Murti complex “undisturbed” and said this would be respecting both history and heritage.
The letter came amid reports of dedicating the NMML in the memory of all former prime ministers, an idea strongly opposed by the Congress.
The proposal kept forward in the 43rd annual general meeting of the NMML society last year by the Modi government was backed by many others who attended the meeting except the Congress party who strongly opposed the idea saying that it would ‘dilute’ Nehru’s legacy. Home Minister Rajnath Singh, who chaired the meeting had said the move was not to dilute Nehru’s legacy.
The vision behind the museum is to help encourage people to learn the history of independent India, sources said while quoting Home Minister Rajnath Singh.
The Centre who has sanctioned 280 crores for the construction of the proposed museum irrespective of all the outrage has decided to honour all prime ministers of the country by building a new museum inside the Teen Murti Estate and has served a notice to Jawaharlal Nehru Memorial Fund (JNMF) to vacate the premises in this respect.