A people without the knowledge of their past history, origin and culture is like a tree without roots
Penang is known as a state which is rich in its history and culture and most importantly for its delectable cuisine and friendly humans.
A lovey-dovey couple has taken an initiative like none of us ever thought of by exhibiting and preserving valuable and historical items for a great cause.
Prakash Jakathesan and his wife set off on an adventure in 2018 when they decided to start a museum. The museum is a living homage to Malaysia’s Indian community, poignantly displaying our culture and traditions.
If you’re in Penang, this museum should be on top of your must-visit places list.
Since then, the Indian Heritage Museum on Macalister Road, run by Penang’s Hindu Endowment Board, has become a must-see for history buffs, with over 2,000 items preserved since the 1930s.
Despite the Covid-19 outbreak and several lockdowns, Prakash and his wife, Punita Mutiah, remained determined, even though they were largely centered on the island and were unable to actively search for old artefacts throughout the country.
After the restrictions were lifted, the museum was reopened.
Old water boilers, old tiffin carriers, a tea stall, a complete set of tools sourced from an old barbershop, and photographs are among the museum’s most notable items.
“Many people prefer going on guided tours given by my wife and me because we own the majority of the museum’s artefacts. Some tourists also opted to wait until my wife and I finished our current tours before bringing the following group,’ Prakash explained.
He also said most locals and visitors are simply intrigued to learn that there is a museum dedicated to conserving the items of South Indian merchants as well as equipment used by rubber estate labourers.
“The artefacts we have in the museum are largely home goods that were purchased from local online dealers or artefact collectors through word of mouth or referrals from other collectors,” said Prakash, who also managed to buy older valuable artefacts from fewer sellers than in prior years.
Prakash enjoys sharing with visitors about his collectables since it is fundamental for history to be passed down from generation to generation, while Punita continues to work and devotes her leisure time to the project.
“If you don’t recount these stories, you’ll be putting a stop to a valuable source of family history and information. “Images or artefacts should always be available for future generations so that they are aware of the family history and can ask questions,” he told Malaymail.
Feel free to visit this historical museum. It is open to the public on Thursdays to Sundays from 10am till 4pm.