Hyderabad’s heritage sites come alive on TikTok videos

Golconda Fort is a favourite spot for such videos.

Golconda Fort is a favourite spot for such videos.  


‘These videographers do not disturb the peace at these sites’

A short-video sharing platform has turned the focus on Hyderabad’s heritage in an unusual twist.

“Earlier, we used to have problems with people snapping selfies as they tried to find unusual places and angles. But with TikTok videos, things have changed,” says an Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) staffer at the Golconda Fort.

“The videos are short and the people who are shooting them don’t disturb others,” says the staffer, showing a video on his phone while speaking about the instant responses.

In the area known as Rani Mahal of the fort, a boy holds a cellphone and instructs two girls standing under an arch of the Golconda Fort how to dance. A short burst of tinny dance music plays on the cellphone and the girls dance and gesticulate. All this lasts barely a dozen seconds.

“Everyone knows this place and they can identify us quickly,” says the young man shooting the video unwilling to go on record. Other heritage sites in the city, including the Charminar, have similarly been framed by the videographers in their search for seconds of fame.

Welcome to the weird, wild and wonderful world of TikTok videos. Some of these videos cast the city’s lesser known heritage sites in a fresh light. The long walkway at Raymond’s Tomb in the Malakpet area has become a hotspot for dramatised shooting of short videos. As very few visitors visit the place, the content makers have a free run.

“This is better than selfies or writing names on the walls. Though tripods are prohibited, many of these people bring selfie sticks and we cannot do much after we find it at the higher levels,” says Satyam, a security guard at the Golconda Fort. The sprawling heritage site has 42 guards working in shifts who keep whistling and running trying to deter the visitors from vandalising the structure.

As hundreds of couples, friends and families hunt for spots to shoot short videos in the ruined palaces, forts and burial grounds the city’s heritage is spotlighted in a whole new light.

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Printable version | Jan 25, 2020 2:46:23 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Hyderabad/hyderabads-heritage-sites-come-alive-on-tiktok-videos/article30236237.ece

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