Location:  The house of antique and classy masterpieces ranging articles from pre-historic to modern time, i.e. National Museum, is located at the corner of Janpath and Maulana Azad Road, New Delhi.

Foundation Year: 1949

Administration: Minister of Culture, Government of India.

Curator: Dr. V K Mathur

Number of artifacts: 2, 00, 000 work of art belonging to Indian and Foreign origin aging over 5,000 years

Institutions in National Museum:

  • National Museum Institute of History of Arts
  • A deemed University called ‘Conservation and Museology’ (founded in 1983) where Masters and Doctoral Level courses in History of Art, Art Conservation and Art restoration are run for the  aspirants.

History:  The need of setting up the National Museum rose with an exhibition of Indian art and artifacts held at the Royal Academy in London during winter season of 1947-48. The curator of the exhibition took decision to exhibit the same display of artifacts intact in India as well after the wind-up of the London exhibition. And that exhibition was organized at the Rashtrapati Bhawan in 1949 that ended at the ‘success-note’. Hence, the idea of having a permanent National Museum was conceived that was realized on 15th August 1949 with the inauguration the same monument by the graceful hands of the then Governor-General of India Chakravarti Rajagopalachari.

The first Prime Minister of India Mr. Jawaharlal Nehru laid the cornerstone at the present structure of the museum on 12th May 1955 and the monument was formally introduced to the public on 18th December 1960.

Collection:  Riches from the heritage of Indian culture conclude 200, 000 artifacts of over 5,000 year old are stored inside the complex of the Museum declaring ‘Unity in diversity’ through remnants of various creative traditions and disciplines. It shows one-and-only fusion of the past with the present along with strong base for future blowing life to the historical artifacts. It has a unique but the most valuable sacred relics of the Buddha from 5th or 4th century B.C. exquisitely dug out of the ground of Piprehwa, Basti district.

Its holdings consist of archaeology, arms, armour, decorative and embellishing arts, jewellery, manuscripts and paintings etc.