A museum in Bangalore is a treasure house of army's history

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Bangalore, Sept 24 (ANI): A museum in Bangalore houses a rich collection of archives, documents and memorabilia of the Indian Army's oldest unit of Engineers, the Madras Engineering Group (MEG), popularly known as the Madras Sappers and Miners.

The Madras Sappers Museum tells the tale of the rich history of the Indian military life.

The museum also houses a rare porcelain bowl, which was presented to the Indian Army by the personnel of the Chinese defence forces, which is the only one piece in the world.

The uniform of the soldiers who sacrificed their lives during World War I and II and also the gallantry awards given by British to the Indian soldiers are all a part of this museum.

Major General Brajesh Kumar, the present Colonel Commandant of the MEG described the museum as cynosure for people in the military.

"The Madras Sappers Museum is not only a museum. It's a museum in an archive. So in the entire historical period since 1790, we have kept artefacts, dresses and equipments, which is being used and actually a panorama of how we have grown," said Major General Brajesh Kumar.

Formally, the museum had been inaugurated in January 1979 by Lieutenant General P R Puri, the then Colonel Commandant of the MEG.

It was the brainchild of Lieutenant General C A Barreto, the Commandant of the MEG and Centre, with an objective to inculcate the Espirit-de-Crops among the veterans as well as the youth by preserving the interesting history since the Madras Sappers was formed in 1780.

Personnel of the MEG fondly addressed as Thambis (in Tamil language), apart from rendering meritorious service in uniform, have also carved out names for themselves in the arena of sports.uring the 1950s and 1960s, the MEG hockey team was one of the strongest squads in India and had several players who were Olympians and internationals. V J Peter, Murthy and Manuel were among the stalwarts of yore.

Likewise, the soccer team of the MEG was a leading contender in numerous state and national level tournaments.

The MEG also produced three world class amateur boxers and the most famous among the trio was Muniswamy Venu who won several titles.

The museum authorities are now planning to open the museum for general public, free of cost. By Jaipal Sharma (ANI)

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