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Indian authorities breathe new life into Roerich estate

July 09, 2014, 15:05 UTC+3 SHIMLA
Nicholas Roerich and his wife Helen moved to Kullu valley in Western Himalayas in late 1928
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Nicholas Roerich in 1940

Nicholas Roerich in 1940

© ITAR-TASS/Archive

SHIMLA, July 09. /ITAR-TASS/. Authorities of Himachal Pradesh, a state in Northern India, are going to restore the former Nicholas Roerich estate in order to preserve the paintings, the Chief Minister of the state, Virbhadra Singh, told to ITAR-TASS. The Roerich estate boasts being a place with long history, attracting tourists from all corners of the world.

“We are proud of Roerich heritage that Himachal Pradesh and Russia share, — he said. “During my first term as Chief Minister we didn’t manage to translate those plans into reality. Now we are ready to get things started”.

The politician promised to make “everything possible” to preserve Roerich’s paintings. “We want to display the paintings in the State’s museums, including the ones in the city of Shimla, State’s capital”, — he said.

Nicholas Roerich and his wife Helen moved to Kullu valley in Western Himalayas in late 1928. Having terminated the Central Asian expedition, they bought a house in a place called Naggar. His son Svyatoslav with wife Devika Rani, a star of Indian cinema, often visited them, living for a long time on the estate Tatagyni, near the southern Indian city of Bangalore.

In July 1992, the International Roerich Memorial Trust (IRMT) was set up. The Trust was founded under the leadership of Virbhadra Singh and Russian current ambassador to India Alexander Kadakin, as well as IRMT vice president.

During the Second World War, the times when India was still a column, the Trust played host to Jawaharlal Nehru and Indira Gandhi, visiting Roerich and planning the creation of Indian-Russian friendship association. Furthermore the Trust plays an important role in people’s lives, as it has become one of the most remarkable sights visited annually by about 100,000 people.

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