Russian Embassy statement on the situation around the International Roerich Memorial Trust

Thursday, 19 April 2012 18:30

The Embassy of the Russian Federation strongly rejects aggressive attempts to take over the International Roerich Memorial Trust (IRMT), Naggar, Kullu Valley, undertaken by officials of the Himachal Pradesh Government and representatives of the district administration. Second such attempt took place on April 17, 2012.

The local authorities behaved in a rude and uncivilized manner and harassed  Dr Adamkova, a reputed scholar and IRMT Executive Director/Curator, completely ignoring her invaluable contribution to the development of the IRMT complex in Naggar during the last 10 years. With support of the local authorities some unscrupulous BOT members (so called "life trustees" and retired attention seeking self-assumed "roerichites") lately have unleashed a massive campaign of slanders and provocations to discredit her, culminating in absurd moves to evict from the Trust all Russian members, including the Ambassador of Russia to India, who is the IRMT founder, life time trustee and Vice President.

The Embassy protests against such actions of the local Government and qualifies them as objectionable and categorically unacceptable, fraught with undermining Russia's civilizational values and aimed at provoking a scandal of bilateral and international dimensions.

The Embassy has repeatedly insisted on an absolute necessity to form a special commission comprising representatives from the State administration and those from the Government of India in the Board of Trustees (BoT), as well as Russian experts and Embassy officials, entrusted with the task of examining and taking stock of the Museum's items and property. Considering the high value of the Museum artifacts this will ensure the integrity and preservation of the collection and will help to avoid any possible or pre-conceived misunderstandings, claims or counter claims and inconsistent accusations. An appropriate document of transfer must be signed by the three parties before Dr Adamkova leaves the premises and her post.

Unfortunately no such steps have been taken, and the local authorities are bending every effort "to remove" the Russian curator. Is it done intentionally? The candidatures of Russian and Indian curators have not been selected and properly appointed.

The Embassy underlines the genuine international and civilizational character of the Roerichs’ legacy – it does not belong to Naggar, or Kullu, or Himachal Pradesh, not even to India or Russia – it belongs to mankind and cannot be administered by a district DC. This indisputable fact should be kept in mind while dealing with all matters pertaining to the IRMT. Considering the universal value of the Roerichs’ legacy, the Embassy and the Russian Government have requested the GOI to work out an appropriate mechanism to take the IRMT under the central jurisdiction.

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