Patna is all set to host a two-day meeting of the G20 this month, and delegates are expected to visit the modern Bihar Museum in the state capital a day before the inaugural event, a top official said.
About 150 delegates will take part in the G20 meeting of the Labour Engagement Group on June 22-23, he said.
The delegates will arrive in Patna on June 21 and they will be staying at three of the plush hotels in the Bihar capital, officials said.
"On June 22, the inaugural meeting will take place at Samrat Ashok Convention Centre near Gandhi Maidan. On the same day, the delegates will be treated to a gala dinner and cultural programmes at Bapu Sabhagar located on the same premises as the Centre," the top official in the Bihar government's Art, Culture and Youth Department told PTI.
On June 23, another round of meetings will take place in the city.
"As per the tentative plan, the delegates after their arrival will visit Bihar Museum on June 21 evening," he said.
One of the most famous occupants of the Bihar Museum is the Didarganj Yakshi or the Chauri-bearer, as she is also referred to.
It remained one of the star attractions of the Patna Museum until the sculpture was moved, along with a large number of antique items, to Bihar Museum on Bailey Road.
The current exhibits at Patna Museum include artefacts dating to the period of 1764 onwards. Those belonging to the pre-1764 period have been shifted to Bihar Museum which was inaugurated in 2017.
Patna Museum is a veritable treasure trove, and home to a collection of rich artefacts, rare paintings and a 200-million-year-old fossilised tree trunk. However, it has been closed to visitors for three months starting June 1, to undertake a revamp of its 95-year-old building.
A senior official in the Bihar government in February had said, "We plan to take the delegates to the old Patna Museum and the modern Bihar Museum for cultural visits, besides the main event. If they wish to go to Nalanda or some other historic sites, we will keep that in consideration too while planning".
However, according to the revised plan, now the delegates' cultural engagements will be in Patna only, officials said, adding, the delegates may also visit the Sikh shrine, Patna Sahib.
The Bihar art and culture department has been made the nodal agency for the G20 event, and plans are afoot to give the delegates a pleasant experience during their visit to Patna.
Some G20-themed banners have already been put up and the civic authorities will be decorating the city ahead of the meeting, officials said.
The G20 meeting in Patna was earlier slated to take place early March, and was later planned to be held in June, they said.
Patna is a historic city that sits on the site of the ancient Pataliputra, the capital of the Mauryan Empire.
India assumed the presidency of the influential bloc on December 1. From metropolitans to smaller cities, including those rich in history and scenic beauty such as Hampi and Khajuraho, India will be holding more than 200 meetings at 55 locations across the country during its year-long presidency.
Top officials of the tourism ministry have said that the idea behind choosing historic cities, among other places, is to put a "spotlight on heritage sites".
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