Days after Hindustan Times reported how Ghalib Ki Haveli — a listed heritage structure in the Walled City area — had been encroached upon, three employees have been suspended.
On Friday, a police complaint was lodged in connection with the encroachment and the Delhi government, responsible for maintenance and protection of the heritage structure, had also initiated an inquiry into the same.
Alert heritage activists had removed encroachment at the Haveli in Gali Qasimjan — where Urdu poet Mirza Ghalib spent time from 1860 to 1869 — after they found the open courtyard being used for carpentry work on Tuesday.
“We have taken punitive action by suspending two chowkidaars and a foreman,” said Sanjiv Pandey, joint secretary in the Delhi government’s department of art, culture and languages.
The officer, however, clarified that the utensils kept at the Haveli to recreate Mughal-era ambience and boards with Urdu couplets were intact.
Activists had claimed these were missing. “The utensils are inside the Haveli. (However) the Urdu couplet boards were removed and kept aside on a loft by our staff as they had been badly damaged due to rain and exposure to sun,” Pandey added.
Following a public interest litigation (PIL), the Delhi government had acquired Ghalib Ki Haveli in December 1999.
The restored memorial was inaugurated in December 2000 and has an information board, a museum and a statue of Mirza Ghalib.