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Gandhi Memorials: Conveying A Strong Message, From Porbandar To Kanyakumari

Mahatma Gandhi’s memorial at Aga khan palace. (Source- Pixabay)

Discovering India

Gandhi Memorials: Conveying A Strong Message, From Porbandar To Kanyakumari

Rajghat is the most well-known memorial to Mahatma Gandhi.

Mahatma Gandhi’s life was dedicated to the Independence movement and he fought for it using the weapons of non-violence and truth. Gandhi memorials celebrate and salute different facets and phases of a life less ordinary.

Here are the snapshots of some of the more popular landmarks.

Rajghat, New Delhi

This is the most well-known and the most-visited among all the Gandhi memorials of the world. A simple black marble platform marks the place where Mahatma Gandhi was cremated after his assassination in 1948.

Located in a sprawling lush green expanse close to the banks of the Yamuna, the serenity of the memorial never fails to surprise a first-time visitor.

It is a must-see for dignitaries, eminent personalities, and tourists visiting the capital of India.

(ReadSaluting The Ahimsa And Satyagraha Of Mahatma Gandhi on Martyr’s Day)

Sabarmati Museum and Ashram, Ahmedabad

Originally established at the Kocharab Bungalow, the Sabarmati Ashram on the banks of the river by the same name has been transformed into the Gandhi Samarak Sangrahalaya. It boasts of archives consisting of 34,065 letters written or received by Gandhi.

Hridaya Kunj is a home to some of the personal relics of Gandhi, a library with more than 20,000 books and over 50 periodicals in English, Hindi and Gujarati. This is among the most visited Gandhi memorials in the country.

Prayer room, Hridya Kunj.

Prayer room, Hridaya Kunj.

Mahatma Gandhi had stayed at the Ashram for many years before he began the Dandi March to break the British salt law on 12 March 1930.

Gandhi Smriti, New Delhi

Birla house, New Delhi.

Birla house, New Delhi.

Gandhi Smriti, initially known as ‘Birla house’ is among the most significant Gandhi memorials in India. One of the biggest museums dedicated to his life, it preserves the last days of Mahatma Gandhi.

It contains a library with over 60,000 books and 6000 original photos of Gandhi. The Museum also has a “Spinning Wheel Gallery” with 23 models of spinning wheels and “Martyrdom Gallery” contains one of the three bullets which pierced through Gandhi’s body and the urn which carried his ashes to Allahabad.

Kirti Mandir & Museum, Porbandar

Mahatma Gandhi was born on 2 October 1869 in the Kirti Mandir, his three storeyed ancestral house, in Porbandar, Gujarat.

The exact place where Gandhi had taken birth is marked with a ‘swastik’.  Behind the temple, is Navi Khadi, the birth place of Kasturba Gandhi, his wife.

Exact place where Gandhi was born.

Exact place where Gandhi was born.

Kirti Mandir has now been converted into a museum containing photographs of Gandhi, his life, possessions and books authored by him or on him. The new building connects the Kirti Mandir with a prayer hall, Gandhian Library, a nursery and a steeple decorated with episodes from Gandhiji’s life.

A total of 22 rooms make up the entire memorial with some of the Vishnu-paintings created by Gandhi’s father.

There are 79 diyas which adorn the walls of the structure reminding the age at which the Mahatma Gandhi was assassinated.

(ReadWhy This South African City Is Inextricably Linked With Mahatma Gandhi & Satyagraha)

Dandi Kutir, Gandhinagar

It is a state-of-the-art three-storey museum with a cable-stayed bridge influenced by the Charkha crowned by a windmill at the top of the bridge pylon and a Gandhi Garden. It celebrates the life of Mahatma Gandhi through 79 artworks.

The story of Gandhi is depicted with modern technology and without artefacts, using a mixture of animated short films.

Mani Bhavan Gandhi Sangrahalaya, Mumbai

Mani Bhavan, a two-storied building in Gamdevi, Mumbai, was his centre to carry out activities for over 15 years starting from 1917.  Gandhi had voicedopposition to the Rowlatt Act, promoting Swadeshi, Khadi and Hindu-Muslim Unity from Mani Bhavan.

Today it serves as a memorial to Gandhi with his pictures, books and other belongings. Mani Bhavan houses a picture gallery, research centre, auditorium where films relating to Gandhi are shown, the Library Hall containing 40,000 books and the Terrace where Gandhi was arrested on January 4, 1932. The room where Gandhi lived is preserved with glimpses of his life in small figures.

Kaba Gandhi No Delo, Rajkot

The house of Mahatma Gandhi’s father, Karamchand Uttanchand Gandhi or Kaba Gandhi, who served as a Diwan, is in Rajkot city of Gujarat. The house has been converted into Gandhi Smriti, a museum exhibiting life and personal belongings of Mahatma Gandhi through photo gallery.

Gandhi Memorial Museum, Madurai

Gandhi had visited the city of Madurai five times in his life. During his visits, he raised his voice against racial discrimination and prohibition of untouchables to enter the Meenakshi Temple.Touched by Gandhi’s move, a mural artist painted an image of Mahatma Gandhi on the temple walls.

 Out of the seven museums in the country which are dedicated to Mahatma Gandhi, The Gandhi Memorial Museum in Madurai is one of them. It features Gandhi’s life through photos, quotes, letter and murals. The Hall of Relics contains 14 original artefacts including spectacles, a shawl, his yarn and the blood-stained cloth that he had worn on his last day.

Gandhi National Memorial Society, Pune

Gandhi, his wife Kasturba and his secretary Mahadevbhai Desai were kept captive in the Aga Khan Palace for almost two years, after the launch of the Quit India movement in 1942.

Kasturba and Mahadevbhai passed away in captivity and their samadhis are located in the campus. Later, after Mahatma Gandhi’s death, Aga Khan IV donated the palace to India as a tribute to Gandhi.

The palace now has a museum and a picture gallery of freedom struggle and Gandhi’s belongings like Kasturba’s saree, footwear and writing desk.‘Gandhi’ movie was shot in the palace.

Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) declared the place as a monument of national importance in 2003.

Gandhi Mandapam, Kanyakumari

A bright pink lotus-like Gandhi Mandapam structure enshrines the urn containing Mahatma Gandhi’s ashes before it was immersed in water. The height of the central dome of this Gandhi memorial marks the Mahatma’s age when he was assassinated – 79. The rays of the sun fall directly on the urn on Gandhi Jayanthi every year at noon.

Kumara Krupa Guest House, Bangalore

Mahatma Gandhi's visit to Bangalore in 1937.

Mahatma Gandhi’s visit to Bangalore in 1937.

On his 18 visits to Karnataka, Gandhi visited Bangalore (now Bengaluru) 14 times.He visited Bangalore for the first time to collect money for the Harijan Fund and women donated their jewellery for the national cause.

Gandhi Bhavan is one of the Gandhi memorials in Bangalore that has been preserved in his memory, besides Gandhi Sahitya Sangha. It is the place where Gandhi held prayers.

Gandhi had stayed at Kumara Krupa Guest House for a month.

Here is the location of 10 international Gandhi memorials dedicated to Bapu-

  1. Parliament Square, London
  2. Church Street, South Africa
  3. Lake Shrine, USA
  4. Copenhagen, Denmark
  5. Tavistock Square, London
  6. Glebe Park, Australia
  7. Plaza Sicilia, Argentina
  8. Memorial Garden, Uganda
  9. Garden Of Peace, Austria
  10. Ariana Park, Switzerland

(Note- all the photos have been taken from the “Gandhi Heritage Portal”.) 

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