NEW DELHI: With all requisite approvals and budgetary provisions in place, conservation of 19 lesser-known historic buildings, which belong to the state archaeology department, will begin by end of this month. The plan was approved about a year ago and the nod for preparation for the detail project report (DPR) was also given. The list of structures picked for conservation includes eight unidentified tombs, three nameless mosques-- in Mehrauli near Jahaz Mahal, RK Puram (in a government school) and Delhi Golf Club and an ancient building in Nangal Devat Village in southwest Delhi for protection work.
The mausoleums, which are not widely known, are located in Lado Sarai, Vasant Vihar, Sundar Nagar, Savitri Nagar, Kaka Nagar, Delhi Golf Club premises and one is located inside Blind School Lodi Road Flyover. Other significant structures to be preserved are Kharbooze ka Gumbad, two burjs (towers) of Mansur, tombs of Mir Taqi, Sayyid Abid, Baghichi and a minaret in Hastsal Village.
“All necessary approvals have been accorded and the work will begin at 19 monuments this month,” Vikas Maloo, Head of Office (Archaeology), Delhi government, said.The department has roped in Indian National Trust for Art and Cultural Heritage (INTACH) for the conservation and restoration work.
According to senior Delhi government officials, privy to the matter, the project will cost around Rs 7 crore. “Work could not begin on these monuments due to various reasons. It took us long to seek technical and financial approval from the departments concerned. Later, the project could not take off as the model code of conduct (for the Lok Sabha elections) came into effect. However, all necessary procedures have now been completed,” an official said.
Conservation of each structure will cost around Rs 20-Rs 25 lakh depending on their size and area, he added. The conservation bid is part of the department of archaeology’s ambitious project for restoration of historically important buildings in the national capital launched almost 11 years ago.The department had identified 238 structures for their phase-wise preservation and conservation. It signed a pact with INTACH for this purpose in 2008. Since then, it has taken up repair of about 18 buildings each year.
So far, 50 historically significant edifices, including tombs, baolis, and sarais, have been restored. The selection of buildings for preservation is based on recommendations from the offices of lieutenant-governor and chief minister, said the official.Explaining the scope of the work, the official said, “At monuments in Delhi Golf Club, the project is interesting as there is lot of art work. After surface cleaning, stucco and medallion artwork are to be conserved. Cement plaster will be replaced with the traditional lime plaster, if any. To stop water seepage, water of ceiling is to be done and plinth of protection of the surrounding is also part of the project.”
11 years in the making
The conservation bid is part of the department of archaeology’s ambitious project for restoration of historically important buildings in the national capital launched almost 11 years ago. The department had identified 238 structures for their phase-wise preservation.