Directorate of Archaeology
|An overview of archaeological importance of Bihar.|
|Formation and Activities of the Directorate.|
|Museums owned by the Central Government.|
|Museums owned by the Universities and Semi-Government Organisations.|
|Museums owned by the Non-Government Organisations (Trust, Societies, etc.)|
|Museums owned by Private Individuals.|
|Bihar Ancient Monuments and Archaeological Sites' Remains and Art Treasures Act, 1976.|
Sri Satyadeo Rai
Asstt. Engineer - Sri Anil Kumar
Junior Engineer - Sri Arvind Tiwary
Section Officer - Sri Prem Kumar Gupta 'Prem'
Museums owned by the Central Govt. in Bihar:
In Bihar, there are four Central museum run by the Archaeological Survey of India.
The Archaeological Museum, Nalanda was established in 1917 to house the worthwhile representative antiquities found as a result of excavations at the famous Buddhist University site at Nalanda. The museum has its own building just nearby the ruins of the famous Nalanda Mahavihara. The antiquities displayed in the museum include stone sculptures and bronze images of Buddhist god and goddesses and a few images of the Hindu pantheon belonging to the Pala period. The exhibited stucco figures are dated to the late Guptas. Besides, inscriptions of the time of Yasovarmandeva (8th century) and of Vipulasrimitra (12th century), sealings of royalties of Guptas Maukharis and a number of official sealings of the Nalanda Mahavivara add to the weight of the exhibits. A few objects collected from Rajgir are also on the show.
The archaeological Museum, Bodh Gaya was established in 1956 with a view to preserving locally scattered sculptures and other precious antiquities. The antiquities, displayed in its own small impressive building, include a few fragmentary stone railings (vedika) of 2nd century B.C., stone sculptures and metal images belonging to the times of the Palas. Two figures of Yakshis, ascribed to the first century B.C. are also exhibited here.
With the foundation of the Vaishali Sangh in1945 a site museum, with the surface finds by a local private individual, Shri Bijali Singh; was started at Vaishali by the sangh itself. After a lapse of three decades – in the year 1971, the Government of India established a site museum just near the old museum of the Vaishali Sangh on the northern bank of the Kharauna tank (abhiseka puskarini). The exhibits in the museum consist of the antiquities, represented by terracottas, seals and sealings, beads of semiprecious stones, punch marked and cast coins, pins and styli of bone, antimony rods of copper, balls of stone, terracotta and ceramic specimens, ascribed to dates ranging from Maurya to Guptas, and a few sculptures belonging to the Pala period, all from Vaishali and surrounding collected either as surface-finds or as a result of archaeological excavations.
The idea of establishing new site museums at different places was discussed in the Superintending Archeaologists' Meeting convened by the Director General, A.S.I., New Delhi in the month of May, 2000. In the meeting, a decision for setting up seven site museums was taken and accordingly a concept plan of the proposed site museum at Vikramshila was chalked out. The museum preserves excavated materials of Vikramshila mostly blonging to Pala period.
Considering the interest of the youths of Bihar, a Science Museum was established in Patna in the year 1978 which was named as Srikrishna Science Centre after the name of the first Chief Minister of Bihar (Dr. Srikrishna Singh). This institution froms an unit of the National Council of Science Museums, an autonomous body under the ministry of Culture. It is located at Chajjubagh, just on the southwestern corner of the local Gandhi Maidan. The Science Centre has been set up with all round objectives for the benefit of the public, especially the students of Schools and Colleges.
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