Abu Dhabi: The Zayed-Gandhi digital exhibition at Manarat Al Saadiyat in Abu Dhabi inspires visitors to make positive changes in their personal life and society, according to officials.
The museum commemorating the 100th birth anniversary of late Shaikh Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahyan and 150th birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi was opened to the public on Tuesday afternoon. The interactive digital content is showcasing rare photos, videos and objects representing the life, works and philosophies of both leaders.
The Ministry of Culture and Knowledge Development has set up the exhibition in collaboration with the Mahatama Gandhi Digital Museum in New Delhi.
An interactive digital tool in the exhibition even helps visitors to assess their commitment towards positive changes in own life and people around them. Visitors can answer questions in a digital survey on a screen, which will tell them their focus in one of the four areas such as work and education, society and humanitarianism, health and wellbeing and environment.
The purpose of the exhibition is disseminating ideals and values of both leaders among more people, Noora Mohammad Al Kaabi, Minister of Cultural and Knowledge Development, told journalists at the museum. “I feel such messages should resonate among all — students, decision makers [etc.].”
She said life of both leaders are very important as their stories tell how India and the UAE became great countries because of their presence.
Birad R Yajnik, the curator of Gandhi museum, told Gulf News that the experience of a visitor would go on even after leaving the exhibition. After understanding the inspiring works of both leaders for their people, one has to try how to become a dedicated custodian, inspiring orator, a visionary peacemaker, passionate humanitarian and a resilient leader, he said.
“These are the qualities of these leaders you have to emulate in your life. That is what you have to do after visiting this exhibition,” Yajnik said.
Al Kaabi said some of the images and digital content touched her heart. “I liked the image of Gandhi among women protesters; he is the people’s person,” she said, referring to a picture of Mahatma Gandhi with textile workers at Darwin, Lancashire in England in 1931.
“I can be biased if I talk about Shaikh Zayed’s pictures,” she said in a lighter vein. Al Kaabi said Shaikh Zayed’s pictures with people are all impressive.
“My favourite one is his visit to India. See the importance of partnership between the UAE and India,” the minister said.
Many visitors were seen taking their pictures inside a sculpture named Dome of Unity created by Abdullah Al Mulla, an Emirati architect. Visitors can listen to audio messages of both Shaikh Zayed and Gandhi inside the dome.
The museum was soft-launched on December 4, 2018 by Shaikh Abdullah Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, and Sushma Swaraj, External Affairs Minister of India. Swaraj was on an official visit to the UAE in early December.
The digital museum was open to the public for a week only in December. Now it is reopened to the public until March 29.
Entry to the museum is free from Saturday to Thursday from 9am to 8pm and on Friday from 9am to 9pm.
Zayed-Gandhi Digital Museum
Location: Manarat Al Saadiyat on Saadiyat Island in Abu Dhabi
Visiting time: (Until March 29)
Saturday to Thursday: 9am to 8pm
Friday:: 9am to 9pm
Entry is free
Six zones of the museum host digital content that highlights these characteristics of both Shaikh Zayed and Gandhi:
ZONE 1: RESILIENT LEADERS
Both leaders made transformation by being inspirational, trustworthy and charismatic role-models who led by example.
ZONE 2: PASSIONATE HUMANITARIANS
Shaikh Zayed as humanitarian changed the lives of millions around the world and Gandhi manifested in others the conscience of humanity.
ZONE 3: DEVOTED PEACEMAKERS
Shaikh Zayed put great effort to maintain peace in the region while Gandhi is a global symbol for non-violence.
ZONE 4: VISIONARY CHANGEMAKERS
Shaikh Zayed strived for bettering the lives of his people and the reformed crucial sectors such as education to empower the people. Gandhi worked for freeing India from British rule and improving the lives of the poorest.
ZONE 5: INSPIRATIONAL ORATORS
Both leaders conveyed their messages to the masses brilliantly. Shaikh Zayed’s poems are famous. Gandhi wrote almost 50,000 pages throughout his lifetime, including books, letters and newspaper articles.
ZONE 6: DEDICATED CUSTODIANS
Both leaders promulgated sustainability. The shape of this zone is inspired by the chemical compound that both salt [represents Ganghi’s independence struggle] and sand [Shaikh Zayed’s symbol of nation building] have in common.