Delhi Lt Governor Anil Baijal on Saturday inspected some heritage sites inside the Mehrauli Archaeological Park and directed the DDA to set up a coordinating body whereby all stakeholders can work in tandem on protection and upkeep of monuments. Located in south Delhi near the iconic Qutub Minar, the park complex houses sites dating back to the 15th and 16th century.
Baijal visited Jamali Kamali Tomb, Quli Khan’s Tomb, Rajon Ki Baoli, among other sites inside the park and stressed the place had a huge potential to be developed into a tourist landmark in Delhi. He said there was a need for a coherent development and maintenance plan of the entire park and directed the Delhi Development Authority (DDA) to set up a coordinating mechanism which would have representatives from all stakeholders, a senior official of the Raj Niwas said.
“Such a body must then come up with a comprehensive time-bound action plan by October-end that covers the entire spectrum of protection, restoration and maintenance works,” Baijal was quoted as saying in a statement by the Raj Niwas. The Lt Governor also interacted with some people who had come for a walk. They apprised him of “cases of encroachment” inside the park, after which he (LG) asked agencies concerned to take strict action as per law, the official said.
Baijal during his visit in the morning, was accompanied by the DDA’s Vice Chairman, Principal Commissioner (Horticulture), Chief Engineer (South Zone); the district magistrate of South Delhi and officials of the ASI and INTACH (Indian National Trust for Art and Culture). The Lt Governor also asked the DDA to provide basic civic amenities for walkers and visitors at the earliest. The archaeological park, spread over 100 acres, has about 80 monuments.
In April 2015, the Delhi High Court had directed the DDA and the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) to secure and free from encroachment the Mehrauli Archaeological Park, saying if nothing was done, the encroachers could take over the nearby Qutub Minar as well. The 12th century towering minaret, one of the three World Heritage Sites in Delhi, is renowned for its architectural grandeur and inscriptions.