The owner of Lal Mahal, the 13th century monument that was demolished partially in the Hazrat Nizamuddin area recently, said in his reply to the Municipal Corporation of Delhi's show cause notice that the property was sold off to a Mumbai-based trust few months back.
"Fazal Ahmad, the owner of the property said that he can't reply to our queries about Lal Mahal as he no longer is the owner. The trust members who had taken the property had approached us and said that they had applied for a no-objection certificate (NOC) from the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) to start fresh construction," said a senior MCD official.
According to the MCD, the trust members said they wanted to start fresh construction soon and would approach the civic agency later for clearing the building plan.
To make sure that other historical properties in the city did not meet a similar fate like Lal Mahal, the civic body would be inviting expressions of interest (EOI) to appoint a private company to conduct door-to-door survey of all the buildings in the Walled City area.
"There are 40,000 structures in the Walled City area and we will be inviting EOIs to select a company that will carry out a 'building, property and socio-economic survey'," said Vijay Singh, deputy commissioner of city zone, MCD.
This survey would catalogue the buildings under various heads such as dangerous buildings, heritage among others. The company would be required to collate ownership details, the architect design of the buildings and put it in a database.
Various teams would be constituted to conduct the survey, which would be completed in three months.
Meanwhile, the civic agency would also be conducting a photographic documentation of all the listed heritage buildings under the MCD to know their condition.