The National Museum, which was intended to relocate as part of the Central Vista redevelopment project, is currently receiving enlargement and a facelift, and is expected to remain at its current Janpath location for at least another “five or six years,” according to sources.
Officials claimed the upgrade and makeover project is aimed at the G20 conference in New Delhi in 2023, when numerous heads of state and government, as well as other dignitaries, will visit the city. The goal, according to the administrators, is to make the museum into the country’s cultural showcase. As part of the museum’s renovation, a new Kashi Gallery will be built. With the support of IIT-Bombay, the auditorium will be refurbished, and the exhibit dedicated to Central Asian antiquities will be expanded and digitised.
The museum has 17,000 paintings in its collection, including the rare 18th and 19th century ‘Company paintings,’ which will now be prominently displayed, according to officials. Since March 2020, the museum has been closed to the public for renovations. The enlargement and renovation are planned to be completed by the end of the year, with the museum perhaps reopening to tourists by August, depending on the Covid-19 situation, according to officials.
After the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) relocated its headquarters to Dharohar Bhawan on Tilak Marg a few years ago, the ASI’s former structure adjacent to the National Museum on Janpath received a major facelift. The structure now contains a display of rare Buddhist artworks from the National Museum’s collection.