Digs a deep trench close to Banjari Darwaza of Golconda Fort to lay a water pipeline in total violation of norms
After the controversy-ridden excavations by the Golf Course, now it is the turn of Hyderabad Metropolitan Water Supply and Sewerage Board (HMWSSB) to take up digging in the prohibited precincts of Golconda Fort. In total violation of rules governing protected monuments, the Board has dug up a deep trench close to the Banjari Darwaza to lay a water pipeline.
The Board’s action has shocked and surprised conservationists since the Banjari Darwaza falls within the prohibited limits. But brushing aside their objections, the Board is continuing its work. A JCB machine is employed to dig out the trench for placing 800-mm-diameter cement pipes. The work is progressing in fits and starts for the last two years to lay an outlet from the newly constructed reservoir at Shaikpet. The project is intended to improve water supply in the Golconda area as and when the Krishna Phase III materialises.No permission
Interestingly, there is no permission from the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) to take up excavation. The Board’s request in this connection was referred to the Director General, ASI, at Delhi by local officials.
“But so far there is no reply from the head office,” said R. Krishnaiah, Superintending Archaeologist, ASI.
The Board could not execute the work last year for want of permission and this resulted in the lapse of project funds, it is said. This year again a fresh application was made by the Board and it was promptly forwarded to the DG. Though the latter has not given any response, the Board is going ahead with the pipe-laying work. “We are orally permitted by the ASI officials to take up the work,” says a Board official.
“Provision of water is an important public amenity and the relevant work has to be carried out. We have asked the Board officials to exercise restraint in the excavation work.
The ASI officer at Golconda has been asked to closely monitor the work,” said Mr. Krishnaiah while admitting that no written permission is given for excavation.
Sometime back the Water Board also laid pipes near the Moti Darwaza and the excavation here resulted in cracks to the huge gate, it is said. ASI officials, however, deny it.