HYDERABAD: If all goes well, a long-cherished dream may come true for Hyderabad’s heritage enthusiasts. They may get an opportunity to adopt their favourite heritage monument and participate in its conservation. A proposal to this effect was submitted by the Intach, Hyderabad chapter to the tourism ministry recently and the former is confident that it would be accepted.
With the State government seeking a place for the Qtub Shahi heritage monuments in the UNESCO’s World Heritage list, the proposal to include community for preservation of structures including the lesser known and neglected structures gains more relevance.
The Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) in January 2010 had directed all its schools across the country to implement a scheme called ‘Adopt a heritage’ to inculcate a sense of responsibility among children towards our heritage. Understanding the impact of this scheme and its relevance and applicability in Hyderabad, the Intach-Hyderabad has proposed the scheme, but with a larger perspective to include the neigbourhood community, schools, colleges, universities, corporates, grass-roots organisations etc. The proposal, according to Intach, only pertains to preservation of heritage structures through creation of a sense of ownership among the community rather than a literal transfer of ownership of monuments!
The local community, according to Intach, would have to approach the State Archeology Department or the Archaeological Survey of India and then, collect literature about the monument, help in spreading awareness, help in safety and surveillance and prevent minor encroachments etc. It could also be financially assisting in safeguarding the monument with the permission of authorities.
“Despite stringent laws to protect and preserve heritage structures, some people cause irreparable damage to invaluable archaeological masterpieces by inscribing their names, places, addresses or messages on national treasures. It is the duty of the community to create awareness and protect our cultural heritage,” pointed out P Anuradha Reddy, convenor, Intach Hyderabad.
Intach has listed 32 city structures as protected archeological monuments and 137 old buildings as heritage buildings. “Many of the heritage monuments could be used as open public spaces, which would also encourage utility of the space in a productive way and help in its conservation,” she said.