Taking serious note of the media highlighting the Punjab government's apathy in preserving the century-old historical buildings such as Qila Mubarak in Patiala and Patiala central jail, the Punjab and Haryana high court has put the state government to notice for March 12.
After taking note of a series of news items appearing in an English daily, justice Ranjit Singh observed: "The heritage buildings can't be vandalised. They can neither be neglected nor demolished. Also, the land on which such buildings have been constructed can't be sold."
After recording a note, Singh forwarded it to chief justice Arjan Kumar Sikri to be treated as public interest litigation (PIL).
Singh observed: "Most disturbing aspect is to notice that after getting these buildings vacated, the century-old jail building is being auctioned, after which the government thinks of becoming richer by Rs 1,500 crore. This is reportedly being done to pay salaries of employees and run the expenditure of the government."
He said: "In my view, there should be a check on this aspect to preserve our rich heritage."
Singh mentioned in his note that the state government has to answer as to what steps it has taken to preserve heritage buildings all over the state and to preserve priceless possessions, which according to the news items, are being neglected.