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HGA in line of fire

S. Sandeep Kumar
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IN FOCUS: Ever since the Hyderabad Golf Association began its activity near the fort, it has been in the news for all the wrong reasons.
IN FOCUS: Ever since the Hyderabad Golf Association began its activity near the fort, it has been in the news for all the wrong reasons.

Ever since the Hyderabad Golf Association (HGA) commenced its activity at Golconda Fort, it has been in the news for all wrong reasons evoking sharp criticism from heritage lovers, voluntary organisations and local residents.

While, members of different voluntary organisations allege that Hyderabad Golf Association is constantly violating rules and court orders, the Hyderabad Golf Association on the other hand maintains that it is adhering to rules and regulations.

Hyderabad Golf Association is taking up all the works, including grassing in the Naya Qila area of Golconda Fort under the supervision of Archaeological Society of India (ASI) and other government bodies.

The High Court has granted permission to HGA to lay grass in the qila area, says Sundar K. Sundaresan, Hyderabad Golf Association managing committee member.

‘Charges false'

He says charges made by NGOs that HGA was destroying graves at Mustafa Khan Masjid area in the qila by dumping truckloads of mud and disturbing the contours of the qila are false.

“In fact, mud was dumped to lay grass for levelling the ground. However, soon after the government instructed HGA early this month to stop the work, we have suspended it and since then we are waiting for further orders,” he says.

“We are not entering any restricted area. The ASI in association with Wakf Board is submitting a report over the land pertaining to Mustafa Khan Masjid. Once the report is submitted everything will be clear. We are documenting our work from the beginning and we are not violating any rules,” asserts Mr. Sundaresan.

‘Baseless'

With regard to allegations over Hyderabad Golf Association drawing water from Naya Qila talab, Shah Hatem talab and Jamali Kunta, he said they were “baseless”.

Every day lot of sewage enters the fort area from surrounding places and HGA is treating such water and reusing it for grassing and other minor works, he claims.

The Archaeological Survey of India has already marked Golconda Fort and precincts clearly and Hyderabad Golf Association has been confining to these specifications from day one. A three-member committee comprising Hyderabad Collector, Andhra Pradesh Tourism Development Corporation Managing Director and Superintending Archaeologist, is closely monitoring all our works, he added.

Works are being taken up under the supervision of ASI and other government bodies, says HGA managing committee member


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