The southern gateway of Badarpur
will be conserved after monsoon
New Delhi: Mughal
prince Dara Shikoh's library, the Malcha Mahal hunting lodge of
Firoz Shah Tughlaq and some ancient gateways are among the 15
neglected monuments that will get a new lease of life with the
Delhi government planning to conserve and restore them after the
"There are several ancient monuments in Delhi which have a rich
history and the government has decided to renovate them and bring
them into their original form," an official of the archaeology
department told IANS.
The whole conservation project follows a memorandum of
understanding (MoU) signed between the department and the Indian
National Trust for Art and Cultural Heritage (Intach) which has
identified 92 structures lying in a dilapidated condition or
over-run by encroachers.
"Out of the 92, 48 structures have been preliminarily notified for
protection and others are in progress. In 2010, the department
along with Intach conserved 17 historical sites in the run up to
the Commonwealth Games. This year we have decided to conserve 15
such sites," said the official.
The department itself is housed in the 300-year-old library, built
by Prince Dara Shikoh, the eldest son of emperor Shah Jahan. It is
in the IP College campus. Under the same project, it will vacate
the premises and move to a new building while a city museum will
come up at the library.
Other prominent monuments among the 15 include the gateways at
Badarpur on the outskirts of Delhi, the Bagichi Ki Masjid in
Mehrauli, the gateway of the garden in the Qudsia area of north
"There are many lesser known monuments in the capital but every
monument has its own value. And there are many which are in a
battered condition and have lost their shine and importance. The
plan of conserving them is in a process and it can be started any
time soon after the monsoon," said Ajay Kumar, a senior project
manager at Intach.
Traditional techniques will be used in restoring them to their
original form, he said.
"We will use the old techniques and original material in
conserving them. For instance, we will apply lime plaster on these
structures which was used by workers in ancient times," said Ajay
The conservation of these sites had to be done in two phases.
After the first phase, comprising preparation of site plans,
documentation and photography, is completed, the second will
entail structural and chemical conservation, landscaping and
Besides using old techniques, expert masons from Rajasthan, Agra,
Chhattisgarh and Madhya Pradesh will be called to work on them.
Along with the restoration, the problem of clearing out illegal
occupants and encroachers will also have to be taken care of.
"We will have to take the help of civil administration and police
to clear the encroachment from these sites as no attention was
paid to it for a long time," said the official from the
The Wakf Board has also raised some objections over the
construction work on some sites. The official was however
confident that the issue will be amicably resolved.
"The Wakf Board has raised some objection but we will be able to
get it out of the way and take their approval for the conservation
of these sites," said the official.
can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org)