External Affairs Minister Pranab Mukherjee Friday said the Indian Council for Cultural Relations (ICCR) would bid to acquire a rare letter of Mahatma Gandhi that is up for auction at Christie's in London next week.
"ICCR will bid for it," he said in Jalpaiguri town of north Bengal while speaking to reporters.
"We are hopeful of getting it," he said.
The auction of the letter, believed to be Gandhi's last before his assassination, has ruffled feathers in the Indian government. Estimated to be worth around 12,000 pounds, it was written 19 days before Gandhi's assassination.
In the letter, written for the Harijan newspaper of which he was editor, India's apostle of non-violence had called for religious tolerance in the country.
The Indian government has launched all out efforts to acquire the letter and the external affairs ministry has asked the Indian High Commission in London to assist the culture ministry in attempts to get hold of the letter.