Centre to take instruction on PIL to protect Gandhian legacy

The Delhi High Court Wednesday asked the Centre and city government to take instructions on a PIL seeking direction to take over management of National Gandhi Museum and three other museums to safeguard films, rare letters, photographs and other historic items related to Mahatma Gandhi.

New Delhi: The Delhi High Court Wednesday asked the Centre and city government to take instructions on a PIL seeking direction to take over management of National Gandhi Museum and three other museums to safeguard films, rare letters, photographs and other historic items related to Mahatma Gandhi.

A bench of Chief Justice G Rohini and Justice R S Endlaw asked the Centre, through Ministry of Culture, Delhi government and Chairman of Gandhi Smarak Sangrahalaya Samiti, which manages National Gandhi Museum to take instruction on the issue before next hearing on January 14, 2015.

"We are adjourning the matter for January 14, 2015. Meanwhile, they (respondents) can take instruction what can be done in relation to the issue raised in the present petition," the court said.

The petition, filed by advocate G L Verma, alleged that there have been "grave financial irregularities apart from disappearance of rare Gandhian legacy including letters, films, photographs, historic items such as blood-stained clothes and lathi used by Mahatma Gandhi during Dandi March as all of them have been either replaced or damaged".

The PIL claimed that the government took no action on the recommendations of Justice Kudal Commission, which was set up in 1981 to inquire the misuse of foreign and state funds by NGOs working in the name of Mahatma Gandhi "without being accountable for their acts of omission and commission".

Expressing concern over protecting the Gandhian legacy for the interest of the country and future generations, the lawyer sought a special scrutiny and audit into the working of the National Gandhi Museum by the Centre in the light of observations of Kudal Commission.

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