HYDERABAD: Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) has said that there was no meeting held between the GHMC, State government and the Central body for the development of Charminar Pedestrianisation Project (CPP).
This surprising fact was revealed in a reply to a question asked by RTI activist SQ Masood. Though ASI only looks after the monument in the Charminar area, the Ancient Monuments Act’s guidelines make it mandatory for the ASI to be kept in loop on all related matters, thus necessitating them to be intimated about CPP-related meetings too.
Interestingly, the fact that ASI was kept out of the loop in matters related to CPP gains ground after, in a letter written by its Superintending Archaeologist Milan Kumar Chauley, he stated, “It is also requested to kindly involve ASI, Hyderabad’s circle during planning of any development activities in and around its Centrally-protected monuments.”
Masood also asked whether a study was done by the ASI during or after the completion of the CPP, to which the Central-body cited a letter that it had written to the Deputy Commissioner of GHMC in 2017.
In the letter, the ASI had raised an alarm over the laying of the tiles for the pavement, which they said was “on a level higher than the existing ground level of Charminar monument and that during the rainy season this would lead to water stagnation”.
They had also requested the GHMC to look into the matter and to reassess the pavement levels.