Ceremonial Foundation Stone Laid for Hyderabad’s Tribal Museum

By NAYAN SING

In a momentous event, Union Minister for Tribal Affairs Arjun Munda and State Cabinet member G. Kishan Reddy came together to lay the foundation stone for the Tribal Museum in Hyderabad. Alongside this groundbreaking ceremony, they also inaugurated the Tribal Research Institute (TRI), a significant initiative backed by 100 percent Central funding amounting to Rs 6.5 crore, located in Masab Tank. This endeavor signifies a moment of great cultural and historical importance, aiming to honor the rich heritage of tribal communities in Telangana.

Unveiling the Museum

The newly envisioned Tribal Museum, located in the vibrant neighborhood of Abids, is poised to become a cultural treasure trove. Its facilities are designed to engage and educate visitors about the rich tapestry of tribal life and history. Here’s what you can expect on each floor:

Ground Floor: Digital Interpretation Zone

The ground floor of the museum promises a captivating digital interpretation zone. It features a wall-mounted interactive map, an information kiosk, a wall-mounted interface with scroll facility, touch interfaces, a VR player, QR code displays for cell phones, and a statistics exhibit. This immersive experience sets the stage for the visitor’s journey into the world of tribal heritage.

First Floor: Nirmal Ghat Fight and the Banyan Tree

The first floor is home to four galleries that showcase pivotal moments in tribal history. Among these exhibits, the Nirmal Ghat Fight and the legendary Banyan tree of 1,000 nooses take center stage. The floor also houses a comprehensive collection of documents and artifacts belonging to the renowned tribal leader Ramji Gond.

Second Floor: Honoring Tribal Freedom Fighters

On the second floor, visitors can explore exhibits dedicated to the fearless tribal freedom fighters who played a vital role in India’s struggle for independence. Icons like Birsa Munda, Kumram Bheem, and the stories of the Manyam Revolt come to life through carefully curated displays.

Third Floor: Celebrating Vulnerable Tribal Groups

The third floor is a tribute to the particularly vulnerable tribal groups (PVTGs) of Telangana. Here, you’ll encounter the Chenchus and delve into their arts, artifacts, and living traditions. This section focuses on the preservation and celebration of the unique cultural heritage of these indigenous communities.

The Role of Tribal Research Institute

Situated on 0.3 acres of land, the Tribal Research Institute is poised to play a pivotal role in promoting and preserving tribal culture. It will collaborate closely with the State government-run Tribal Cultural Research and Training Institute of Telangana (TCRTI). The key functions of the TRI include conducting baseline surveys, ethnographic research, action research, and evaluation studies to assess the impact of various schemes implemented for tribal communities. Additionally, it will delve into the history, culture, languages, arts, crafts, and traditions of Telangana’s tribes, with a focus on their conservation.

A Long-Awaited Recognition

G. Kishan Reddy, who has been a driving force behind the establishment of the tribal museum and research institute, emphasized the importance of this endeavor. He stated, “Finally, with the opening of the research center and the laying of the museum’s foundation, the sacrifices made by tribals for Telangana’s independence will receive the recognition they deserve. Through research, we will inform the world about their unique culture and traditions.”

Telangana’s Rich Tribal Heritage

Telangana boasts a tribal population of 9.08 percent, as per the 2011 Census. This demographic is characterized by a diverse range of indigenous populations, including dispersed tribes and particularly vulnerable communities. To fund the museum’s construction, the Central government initially sanctioned Rs. 15 crore in the fiscal year 2019-20. More recently, in August of the current year, the apex committee of the Centre granted in-principle approval for an additional Rs. 10 crore. With these funds secured, the State government has identified 0.75 acres in Abids to ensure accessibility to the museum. Rigorous soil-bearing capacity tests have been conducted, and a detailed DPR (Design Project Report) with estimates totaling Rs. 34 crore is in place.

In conclusion, the establishment of the Tribal Museum and the Tribal Research Institute in Hyderabad marks a significant step towards recognizing and preserving the rich cultural heritage of tribal communities in Telangana. These institutions will not only serve as educational landmarks but also as sources of inspiration, ensuring that the legacy of tribal culture continues to thrive for generations to come.

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