Days after the Haryana Department of Archaeology decided to restore all monuments of importance in Gurgaon that date back to at least a 100 years, work has started on one such structure — a stepwell in the district’s Dhumaspur village.
According to officials from the department, the stepwell could be 800 years old. “It is anywhere between 200 and 800 years old, because these structures keep getting built and re-built, so it is a little difficult to figure out the exact time,” said Dr Praveen Kumar, Director, archaeology department.
Located on the Badshahpur-Dhumaspur road next to a private school, officials say, the stepwell is “almost five-storey high” and is composed of “over 100 pillars”. It stands on 1,220 square yards of land. “The focus today was on the practical nitty gritties, such as taking measurements and deciding how best to undertake the restoration without affecting the working of the school next door,” said Dr Kumar.
“There were a lot of plants that had grown on the roof of the stepwell, so our aim today was to uproot those in a safe and meticulous way without adversely affecting either them or the stepwell,” he said.
Work on the structure, which commenced on Thursday afternoon, is expected to take “between six months and one year” to complete. The stepwell is located 1.5 kilometres away from another of its kind, which lies in Badhshahpur village, and had become a focus of attention last month when it was found to stand in the path of a sector road being constructed in the area by HUDA — hence, being in danger of extinction.
The route of the road, however, after a visit by officials, was realigned so that the stepwell can continue to remain where it stands.
The archaeology department had decided to take over all historically significant structures in the district and its adjoining areas to restore and conserve them, and develop them as tourist spots.