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Rare Gandhi books as gifts for Obama

The trustees of Mani Bhavan are planning to gift US President Barack Obama a couple of rare books on Mahatma Gandhi, and not his autobiography – My Experiments with Truth.

mumbai Updated: Nov 05, 2010 01:15 IST
Aarefa Johari

The trustees of Mani Bhavan are planning to gift US President Barack Obama a couple of rare books on Mahatma Gandhi, and not his autobiography – My Experiments with Truth.

“We had never really planned to gift him Gandhi’s autobiography, as Obama is well aware of Gandhian thoughts and might have already read it,” said Meghshyam Ajgaonkar, the executive secretary of Mani Bhavan, the city’s only Gandhi museum, which Obama is likely to visit on Saturday.

“The trustees have not yet selected which books they want to settle for, but they will be one or two rare books that he must not have read yet,” added Ajgaonkar.

Usha Thakkar, one of the trustees, who will be present to welcome Obama, said the books would be a token of their good wishes to Obama. “He is coming to pay homage to the Mahatma, to experience the vibrations of peace and non-violence in the museum, and we are very happy about that,” said Thakkar.

Mani Bhavan, which is usually open to visitors on all days of the year, was closed for the public on Thursday and will remain closed till November 7 so that the staff can prepare for the US President’s visit.

While trustee Vasant Pradhan will welcome Obama with a khadi garland, Gandhi’s granddaughter Usha Gokani will receive US First Lady Michelle Obama.