The Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC) has decided to extend financial assistance of Rs 75 lakh to carry out conservation work at the Deccan College building, a heritage structure that has been listed in Grade I of the heritage list.
In a proposal tabled in the PMC Standing Committee, Additional Municipal Commissioner Rubal Agarwal said Deccan College is the only institute in the country that imparts specialised education on the history of the country.
“Bal Gangandhar Tilak, R G Bhandarkar who founded the Bhandarkar Institute, historian V K Rajwade, Gopal Ganesh Agarkar, gurudeo Ranade and Dwarkanath Kotnis are the alumni of Deccan college,” stated the proposal.
It pointed out that the institute offered research opportunities in Archaeology, Sanskrit, Maratha history and Philology, and had students from India and abroad.
The building is in a dilapidated condition — water leakage from the damaged roof has affected wooden pillars, and leakage from the walls has affected the wooden artwork. The stones in the wall have come loose and woodwork in the roof has been damaged, needing extensive repair work.
“It has been proposed to provide financial assistance of Rs 75 lakh for the conservation of the heritage building in Deccan College from the Mayor’s fund,” said Agarwal.
There are a total of 251 heritage buildings in the jurisdiction of the PMC. The PMC is in charge of the conservation of the heritage buildings in its jurisdiction while the Archaeological department takes care of the conservation of the heritage buildings in the jurisdiction of Union and state governments. “There are many heritage structures in the Grade I list of the PMC that are owned by educational institutes or trusts, but are ignored due to lack of funds, and the Deccan College building is one of them,” stated the proposal.
The estimated cost for repair and conservation work is Rs 3.5 crore and there is need for further financial assistance to complete the project.