Encroachment, space crunch haunt city's 400-year-old Shia graveyard

One of the largest Shia Muslim graveyards in the state, DHMM faces issues such as encroachment, lack of security.

Published: 16th June 2016 05:24 AM  |   Last Updated: 16th June 2016 05:24 AM   |  A+A-

Encroachment

HYDERABAD: The 400-year-old Daira-e-Hazrat Mir Momin (DHMM) graveyard at Haribowli in Old City built by Mir Momin Astrabadi of Isfahan, Iran, the first Prime Minister of Hyderabad during Qutb Shahi’s reign, is in a state of utter neglect.

One of the largest Shia Muslim graveyards in the state, DHMM faces issues such as encroachment, lack of security, and space to bury the dead.

“Out of the 19 acres and 36 guntas of the DHMM, 6 acres and 66 guntas have been encroached. Boundary wall and gates have to be built in the southern and western sides to stop trespassers. We have informed the Wakf Board, who in turn told the state government. However, no action has been taken till date,” said Zeeshan Abbas, Sadar (head) of the DHMM committee.

The Iran consulate had promised to repair the dargah of the first PM of Hyderabad but works stopped abruptly. “Iran consulate was to spend for glassworks in the DHMM dargah (resting place of Mir Momin Astarabadi). The work had started but stopped abruptly five years ago. We only hope that works will resume soon,” he said. The Telangana government had also recently promised to renovate the graveyard.

Water is scarce in the graveyard as in other parts of the city. “We have to carry water from the borewell outside the main gate. We need a water tank immediately,” said dargah caretaker Md Karim.

Security is also a major concern at the historical site. “After nightfall the premises is used by anti-social elements due to the absence of watch and ward staff. Drunkards and drug addicts from the vicinity break the lights at the lampposts to trespass into the premises. There are no CCTV cameras and the two security guards seldom patrol the graveyard,” said mustawalli (manager) Md Ahmed. The Ashoorkhana is too small to accommodate the families of caretakers. “A bigger Ashoorkhana is necessary. Many of us have to stay outside the premises,” he added. Hyder Ali Mirza, muntazzim (superintendent) of DHMM says the premises is unclean and there is no space to bury the dead. “No GHMC cleaner is allotted to us. We have no adequate staff to clean the huge campus. Also, there are not much space to bury the dead,” he said.

Meanwhile, GHMC deputy commissioner P Srinivas Reddy said, “We need a representation from the local corporator. After that we will send our teams to survey and see what works needed to be done in the graveyard. Only then, we can commence works for refurbishment.”



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