Friday, November 14, 2008

Junagadh News-Sakkar Baug Zoo Museum

Sakkar Baug museum gets new home at Taj Manzil.

Department of Museums contemplates installing tight security system at the palace.

The Sakkar Baug Zoo museum – located in the heart of the Junagadh City Zoo – will be shifted to the Taj Manzil palace.

Though the specific reason for the shift is not known, it is speculated that as the visitors to the museum had to pay fee even for zoo, it kept them away.

The new location of the museum is spacious and will also help the department to display the two centuries-old nawabi treasure more effectively.

“Earlier, the museum was located in an 11,000-square-foot area, whereas in the Taj Manzil, the display area is as big as 22,000 square feet. And the palace, with its ivory flooring, furniture and staircases, is itself a museum,” said S N Pandey, Director of the State Department of Museums.

In addition to shifting the artefacts from the Sakkar Baug museum, the nawabi treasure from 17th to 19th century will be kept on display.

“The treasure and belongings of all the nine nawabs of Junagadh(Saurastra) have been kept with the Junagadh collector. All these things will be displayed in the museum in various categories,” said Pandey.

“The collection of Rs 10 and Rs 2 as fee from the visitors of the zoo and the museum does not matter. But this new place will certainly get more tourists as it is centrally located and it can be accessed more easily,” said Pandey.

Taj Manzil was earlier occupied by the Junagadh Ayurvedic College before it shifted to Ahmedabad. The Department of Museums is in the process of signing an MoU with a Delhi-based company to install heavy security system in the museum.

“The display of such priceless artifact calls for heavy security. We will be incorporating the latest security measures, including bullet-proof showcases, alarm system, and cameras,” said Pandey.

Sources said the old Sakkar Baug museum will be converted into a conservation lab for museum artefacts.

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