The National Museum boasts a fine collection of artefacts and precious objects that cover more than 5,000 years of Indian cultural heritage. It exhibits about 2,00,000 works of both Indian and foreign art. The library of the museum is a goldmine for researchers as it contains books and journals related to various fields such as anthropology, archaeology, conservation, decorative arts, history, literature, museum studies, painting, philosophy and religion for research and reference. The library contains over 60,000 volumes of books, journals and several Indian and International journals and magazines. The museum was inaugurated on August 15, 1949 by Shri RC Rajagopalachari, the then governor-general of India. Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru, the first Prime Minister of the country, laid the foundation stone of the present building on May 12, 1955. The first phase of the building was formally inaugurated by Dr S Radhakrishnan on December 18, 1960 and the second phase was completed in 1989.

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