Jama Masjid to get back its lost glory: Second govt team visits mosque to assess damage
This was the second time in three days that a team of district administration visited the site after Hindustan Times on Thursday highlighted how cracks triggered by water seepage were threatening the Mughal-era mosque.delhi Updated: Dec 17, 2017 00:15 IST
The Delhi government on Saturday said an action plan would soon be prepared to restore Jama Masjid to its former glory.
Senior government officials, including divisional commissioner Manisha Saxena and district magistrate of central district Nidhi Srivastava, examined the damage to the 361-year-old iconic structure in Old Delhi on Saturday.
After the inspection, Saxena said, “The department is waiting for a report from the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI), which is expected on Monday. Any plan to carry out required repairs and protection of the structure will be chalked out after their findings.”
This was the second time in three days that a team of district administration visited the site after Hindustan Times on Thursday highlighted how cracks triggered by water seepage were threatening the Mughal-era mosque.
The deputy superintendent (archaeology) was also supposed to join the inspecting team on Saturday but could not come due to “personal reasons”, officials added.
Another government official said that the mosque had considerable damage signs and needs substantial long-term plan for its conservation. “The administration is looking into the matter. The structure calls for a proper action plan. Ad hoc provisions will not work. We will have to identify root causes for a course of action and we need a technology-based solution,” said the official, who wished not to be named.
Divisional commissioner Manisha Saxena is monitoring the case as she also holds the charge of departments under which District Disaster Management Authority (DDMA), and Delhi Wakf Board (DWB) fall.
The first survey of the mosque was conducted on Thursday after the HT report. The examination teams from DDMA, ASI, and DWB were to submit their findings to their respective department heads on Friday.
The ASI last carried out restoration work at Jama Masjid 10 years ago after a report by conservation architect Naveen Piplani.
The mosque, which was built by the Mughal emperor Shah Jahan in 1656, is not a protected monument and falls under the jurisdiction of the DWB. The body manages its affairs through a mosque managing committee.
However, as per a special arrangement initiated at the behest of then prime minister Jawaharlal Nehru, the ASI had been maintaining and repairing it occasionally.
An official privy to the development said that as the DWB did not have an adequate budget, a proposal seeking funds may be sent to the ministry of housing and urban affairs under its ambitious scheme — Heritage City Development and Augmentation Yojana (HRIDAY).