Social activist Ajay Jagga has written to the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) about the auction of Chandigarh heritage furniture in countries abroad. The grievance was lodged with the PMO after Jagga received a letter from the CBI stating that his complaint has been forwarded to ASI.
Jagga said he has been writing repeatedly, but the agencies are only passing the buck. Jagga had written to CBI director Alok Kumar Verma and Director General of the Directorate of Revenue Intelligence Debi Prasad Dash to get the matter investigated and get this trafficking of culture heritage items stopped. “Despite giving advance intimation, the auction in London went peacefully and out of four, two lots were auctioned,” Jagga had said in his letter.
Since 2011, Jagga had been writing to the Chandigarh Administration to probe the disappearance of furniture designed by Corbusier and Jeanneret, and its appearance at auction houses in Europe and America, where each piece was sold for lakhs. The Chandigarh Administration then formed a heritage protection committee but nothing was done. Jagga suggested that an FIR be filed against all those involved in the auction.