Prime Minister Dr.ManMohan Singh today released a souvenir sheet contains 3 commemorative postage stamps( 20 Rs,20 Rs and 5 Rs) on bicentenary of Indian Museum Kolkata.The Indian Museum is the largest museum in India and has rare collections of antiques, armour and ornaments, fossils, skeletons, mummies, and Mughal paintings. It was founded by the Asiatic Society of Bengal in Kolkata (Calcutta), India, in 1814. The founder curator was Dr Nathaniel Wallich ,a Danish botanist.
It has six sections comprising thirty five galleries of cultural and scientific artifacts namely Art, Archeology,Anthropology,Geology,Zoology and Economic Botany. This multipurpose Institution with multidisciplinary activities is being included as an Institute of national importance in the seventh schedule of the Constitution of India. It is one of oldest museums in the world. This is an autonomous organization under Ministry of Culture , Government of India. The present Director of the Indian Museum is Dr. B. Venugopal. The Museum is preparing for its bicentennial in February 2014.
The Zoological and Anthropological sections of the museum gave rise to the Zoological Survey of India in 1916, which in turn gave rise to the Anthropological Survey of India in 1945.
It currently occupies a resplendent mansion, and exhibits among others: an Egyptian mummy, the Buddhist Stupa from Bharhut , the Buddha’s ashes, the Ashoka pillar, whose four-lion symbol became the official emblem of the Republic of India , fossil skeletons of prehistoric animals, an art collection, rare antiques, and a collection of meteorites.