Haa to commemorate being the birthplace of modern education in Bhutan

The batch of 1958 with prime minister of India Jawaharlal Nehru (Photo: Dasho Nado Rinchen)

Century Celebration: Haa dzongkhag is collecting education artifacts used before 1950, including photographs, to be exhibited in the Sherig museum as a part of the century celebration.

So far, about 100 pieces have been collected.  A copy of a certificate awarded to a teacher called Lopen Dago, who served since the first King’s time, hurricane lanterns, slates, books (study materials) and photographs of Haa students with Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru, are some of the exhibits collected so far.

The photograph with Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru is that of the 1958 batch.

District education officer of Haa, Sonam Tenzin, said these exhibits were collected only from Haa and Thimphu for now. “From August, I’m planning to visit the other dzongkhags to collect as many old items as I can get,” he said. “We’ve also received assurance from some that they will contribute items.”

Sonam Tenzin said the exhibition may start from February 21 next year, coinciding with the birth anniversary of the King.

The venue of the exhibition is yet to be decided. “If we’re short of budget, about Nu 600,000 for printing and framing the photographs and construction of a simple museum, we’ll exhibit it at Ugyen Dorji higher secondary school’s multi-purpose hall, and wait for a budget for the museum.”

No budget has been allocated by the education ministry, or a different organisation, so far.

Haa dzongda, Rigzin Dorji, said the dzongkhag office received a letter from the education ministry to mobilise funds on their own. “We’re trying to seek assistance from the alumni of Haa schools, and hopefully we might receive some financial support from others,” he said. “Otherwise we might have to mobilise funds within the dzongkhag, or from different sectors here.”

The idea for a museum was conceived by Haa dzongkhag and education ministry.  With the museum, the dzongkhag also has a plan to build a centenary monument to commemorate the Sherig century.

By Sonam Choden

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