The Punjab and Haryana High Court on Tuesday issued notices to the Chandigarh Administration on a public interest litigation (PIL) seeking directions to preserve the heritage property of Chandigarh in terms of its original form and design material. The PIL has been filed by Ajay Jagga,a resident of Sector 21-A,Chandigarh who is also a lawyer practicing in the Punjab and Haryana High Court. Notices have been issued to the Director,Department of Tourism,and Commissioner,Municipal Corporation.
Arguing on behalf of the petitioner,Advocate Aalok Jagga submitted that the original form & design,materials & substance,use & function as well as spirit & feeling of the monuments created by Le Corbusier should not be disturbed,repairs should be done instead of replacements,to keep the original form,design,material and substance intact.
Aalok Jagga further averred that the Administration be directed to prepare an inventory of antique furniture,artifacts,tapestry and other material as collected by the Chandigarh Administration from various Heritage buildings with a direction to initiate steps for its preservation of the same.
In its petition,Jagga had also sought directions to the Administration to pursue an application dated October 23,2006 filed with UNESCO for declaring it a World Heritage city and also to prepare and submit requisite information demanded by UNESCO in compliance Operational guidelines for implementation of the World Heritage Convention required for conferring the status of World Heritage City upon Chandigarh.
However,the Bench issued notices to the Administration only on the issue of preservation of heritage material and monuments created by Le Corbusier. Referring to various news items appearing in English dailies,Aalok Jagga contended that the heritage is being auctioned in abroad which has fetched lakhs of rupees. Jagga took a dig at the UT Administration for its lackadaisical attitude in not conducting the auction of monuments in India,money earned out of which could have been a substantial earning to the state exchequer.