Nagpur painter Bijay Biswaal’s painting depicting Prime Minister Narendra Modi at a railway station was sold for Rs 5 lakh at a two-day physical auction of the gifts received by PM Modi. The painting was sold at the auction, which started at National Gallery of Modern Art in New Delhi on Sunday.
Biswaal, who is a retired Indian Railways employee and a self-taught painter, had gifted the painting to PM Modi in November 2016 in New Delhi during a function organised by Indian Railways. PM Modi had praised Biswaal for his paintings during his radio programme ‘Mann Ki Baat’ in July 2015.
Along with the painting, a wooden bike received by PM Modi was also sold for Rs 5 lakh. While the painting had a base price of Rs 50,000, the bike had a base price of Rs 40,000. A memento of the Golden Temple with a base price of Rs 10,000 was sold for Rs 3.5 lakh. Some other items, which were sold included: A photo frame of Ashtamangalam (Base price: Rs 1,500, Sold for: Rs 28,000), a metallic sword (Base price: Rs 5,000, Sold for: Rs 1 lakh) and a statue of Mahatma Basaveshwara (Base price: Rs 10,000, Sold for: Rs 70,000).
The last day of the physical auction was on Monday. During the two-day auction 270 items out of 1,900 items were sold. While the physical auction has ended, the remaining gifts will be e-auctioned till January 31 on the website: www.pmmementos.gov.in
After the e-auction, the amount raised through the physical and online auction will be used for ‘Namani Gange,’ which is a central government project to clean river Ganga.
An elated Bijay Biswaal, while speaking to Nation Next said, “I got to know a month back that my painting, which I had gifted to our honourable Prime Minister Narendra Modi will be auctioned soon. I’m very happy and on the top of the world to realise that the proceeds will be used for such a good purpose.”