DHARAMSALA, 9 Feb: The President of the Central Tibetan Administration(CTA) today formally opened the new Tibet Museum, a 9,000 square feet of exhibition space at Gangchen Kyishong, the Central Tibetan Secretariat here.
“The new Tibet Museum is much more bigger in size, in content and in space compared to the one we had at Tsuglakhang before. It took a lot of time and energy to research and for compilation of all the materials, so I appreciate all the people behind this project,” Penpa Tsering, the President of the CTA said after formally opening the new Tibet Museum of the Department of Information and International Relations (DIIR) of the CTA.
“I am very happy that my predecessor has taken this initiative and now it has come to fruition, and its time, for now, people to get an opportunity to see the history of Tibet, the struggle Tibetans underwent, the hospitality extended to Tibet by the India and countries around the world to support the Tibet’s cause,” President Tsering added.
One of the biggest projects undertaken by CTA, the new Tibet Museum was inaugurated on 25 May last year by the then CTA President Dr Lobsang Sangay after its successful completion of the preliminary stage which took four years of careful and detailed planning.
President Tsering further expressed his hope that all the efforts, time and money spent will serve its purpose.
“What is more important is to make sure that the energy, the time and the money that we have put in should be purposeful. So we have to make sure that as many people come down here to Gangchen Kyishong where you always have a regular tourist attraction at the Library of Tibetan works and archives which also has a tremendous amount of Tibetan literature, manuscripts, artefacts and also creative arts and culture within their museum,” he said.
Describing the Tibet Museum as one of the best ways to disseminate information on Tibet, he added “there are so many ways of disseminating information on Tibet and this is one of the best ways as people can come here, and see for themselves, listen to stories, and listen to what has happened to Tibet. Then perhaps people will get interested in Tibet and even those who do not know anything about Tibet might get interested and support the Tibetan cause.”
“This is what we hope for.”
As the Tibet Museum, located on the second floor of the five-storey T-building and the Library of Tibetan works and archives are within walking distance, the CTA President hopes that it makes it easier for the visitors- Tibetans and foreigners alike- to visit both the library and the Tibet Museum.
He further said that “eventually we are planning to develop a virtual guide in different languages so that every visitor can listen to the stories of Tibet in their own mother tongue.”
Later in his address at the inaugural ceremony held at Sikyong Hall, the CTA President credited HIs Holiness the Dalai Lama for every accomplishment the administration undertook.
Expressing deep gratitude to the Dalai Lama, he then assured Tibetans both inside and outside Tibet that the Tibetan spiritual is hale and healthy.
Tashi Phuntsok, the Director of Tibet Museum in his address thanked individuals and organisations who have generously donated some of the artefacts on display in the museum.
The new Tibet Museum presently houses ten permanent exhibitions and it will remain open for the visitors from 9 AM-5 PM every day with a nominal entry fee of 20 Rupees.
While it was initially scheduled to be opened on 27th January 2022, it has to be postponed until now due to COVID-19 amid rising COVID-19 cases in the town.
With an objective to document, preserve, research, exhibit and educate Tibetans and non-Tibetans on all matters related to Tibet’s history, culture and present situation the Tibet Museum was established twenty years ago in 1998.
After the formal opening of the new Tibet Museum here in the Central Tibetan Secretariat, its curtain for the old one located near Tsug-lag-Khang, the main temple in McLeod Ganj will now be closed.