Raja Dinkar kelkar Museum is one of the most decorated and visited museums placed on Bajirao road in the heart of Pune city, Maharashtra. The museum includes more than twenty thousand collections of objects like handcrafts, paintings, musical instruments, carved place doors and a range of manuscripts brought together from all over the world. The famous museum was constructed by Dr. Raja Kelkar, a famous archive collector and to commemorate his son Raja who died at the age of seven. In the year 1962 Dr. Kelkar bequeathed the famous monument to the department of Archaeological survey of India in an attempt of preservation the collections and safeguarding the aesthetic works inside the building.
The design of the Raja Dinkar Kelkar Museum reflects Rajasthani style and inside the building ornamented with intricate door frames, artworks and musical instruments. The images portrayed on the wall conveying Indian prowess in artifacts and a clear delineation of the life and culture of Marathas. Focal interest is obviously huge galleries and enormous collections inside the monument. The founder Dinkar Kelkar spent sixty years to purchase and accumulate the valuable pieces from various parts of India and categorized them into 35 divisions. As much as twenty thousand different articles which comprise predominantly Indian decorative items, plenty of artifacts and aesthetic works completed during Mughal and Maratha periods. In addition, intricate carved palace doors, vessels and musical instruments also featuring the museum and each piece of collection is cramped into pots, containers and pen stands etc. to entertain visitor. The vessels are kept and exhibited in the ground floor of the building. These were built during 18th century and made of several substances including amalgamation of copper and terracotta etc. brought from Maharashtra. Tourists can also find the sculptures of different Hindu deities predominantly Lord Ganesh, lord Shiva and goddess Parvati placed in the first floor adorned with insightful paintings illustrating various sights from the epic Ramayana. The museum definitely puts a broad smile to the face of music lovers as the room embraced lots of musical instruments comprising personal instruments of artists like Saarangi of Ustad Kadarbaksh and P.L Deshpande. A tambool dates back to 18th century placed in the hall, which consists of nut-cutters, lime containers and spittoons. Some extinct articles and manuscripts assigned in 17th century are amongst the notable pieces of collections kept interior the monument.
A little close to the museum Mastani Mahal is positioned. The remarkable piece of structure was built in the year 1734 and an attempt to reminisce Peshwa Baji Rao’s first wife Mastani Bibi. The rooms inside the Mahal are embellished with beautiful images clinging to walls and a delicate idle of Lord Ganesh with his trunk tilt towards left is also kept inside.
Tourists can visit the monument at anytime in a day in between 9 am to 6 pm. The place is also closed on during the public holidays.