The Brij Vilas Bhawan in Kota, one of the oldest government museums in Rajasthan is undergoing a facelift in a bid to conserve the building and restore the artifacts.
Brij Vilas Bhawan Government Museum in Kota was earlier a palace but it was transformed into a museum just before Independence in 1946.
After Independence, the museum was shifted to the Kota City Palace in 1951 but it was again brought back to Brij Vilas Bhawan in 1994.
Facing onslaught of time and nature, the museum was in dire need of maintenance and conservation which is now being done by the state archaeology and museum department of Rajasthan.
Although partial restoration of the museum was carried out in the past but now a comprehensive restoration and conservation work has being on for the last couple of months for which the state government has allocated ₹2.11 crore, said Umrao Singh, superintendent of the museum.
“The historic baori (step wells) of the museum has been cleaned and decorative fountains have been installed in it,” he said.
“Repair work of roof leakage and chemical treatment of artifacts are being carried out at present.”
The display galleries will also see changes as artifacts will now be displayed through either stone or metal pedestals instead of the earlier wooden pedestals, he said, adding that more than a dozen ancient statues and artifacts lying in the open due to lack of space, will now be given place inside the galleries of the museum during the restoration work.
“Entire electricity line of the museum will be changed since there are problem of short circuit, which was making museum vulnerable to fire mishap. Tube lights are being replaced by LED lights while nine CCTV cameras will also be installed for security reasons,” he said.
The Amer Development Authority of Jaipur is carrying out the restoration work, which will complete by December 2017. The museum is closed for public until the restoration work is completed.
The main attractions of the museum are ‘Yupa’ inscription of 3rd century AD obtained from Badwa, Sheshshaayi Vishnu idol of 9th century obtained from Badauli, stone idols, miniature painting, arms, armaments, dresses, coins, stone equipment of different stone ages and other artifacts.