The M. P. Birla Planetarium started functioning from September 29, 1962 as an educational, scientific and research institution and was formally inaugurated on July 2, 1963 by the first Prime Minister of India Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru. This was the second major Planetarium to be set up in the commonwealth countries with London having a Planetarium a few years earlier to the one in Calcutta.
Syt. M. P. Birla was the driving force for setting up M. P. Birla Planetarium. The planetarium, since its inception, has designed and presented to the public and students more than 300 astronomical projects dealing with many facets of astronomy, astrophysics, celestial mechanics, space science, history of astronomy as well as mythology concerning stars and planets. The Planetarium has also been conducting a series of graded school programmes for children of various age groups.
The M. P. Birla Planetarium, over the last five decades of its existence has hosted national and international seminars in astronomy and connected fields and has been regularly organizing astronomical expeditions for the studies of eclipses and other celestial events. The Planetarium has also been organizing special lectures and exhibitions in connection with centenaries of renowned astronomers. The International Year of Astronomy, 2009 was celebrated at the Planetarium by producing multi media shows and special public awareness programmes. The faculty members, regularly attend national and international conferences and workshops and deliver lectures. Dr. Debiprosad Duari, Director, Research & Academics regularly delivers lectures at different universities and colleges to motivate further interest and research activities in astronomy.