A 500-year-old tomb reportedly a resting place of an unknown person from Tughlaq era has been converted into a temple at Safdarjung Enclave’s Humayunpur village.
The heritage structure from the 15th Century was painted saffron and white in March with idols placed inside it. Now, Deputy CM of Delhi Manish Sisodia has ordered an enquiry into the alleged change.
In 7-8 months our team visited 5-6 times for conservation, with state archaeology team & Police, but locals say its personal property as they've revenue records: A.Kumar, Director-Projects, Indian Ntn'l Trust for Art & Cultural Heritage (INTACH) on structure in Humayunpur #Delhi pic.twitter.com/PUNwr0P7hr— ANI (@ANI) May 5, 2018
“It is the duty of the state archaeology department to ensure the protection of heritage monuments listed under them and take strict action in case of a lapse,” Sisodia said in his order.
“The reported incident should be handled with zero tolerance by the department as it not only violates heritage related laws but is also an attempt to disturb peace and harmony in the area,” the letter stated.
The two saffron-coloured benches with the name of BJP councillor from Safdurjung Enclave, Radhika Phogat were placed inside it, as per a leading daily.
“Secretary (ACL) to provide a detailed report to me by tomorrow (Saturday) with details of the incident and action taken by her,” the deputy chief minister added.
One member from the restoration team told a leading daily that till 2-3 years ago, the ‘gomti’ was used to keep old furniture and remained locked, it was used as a store room.
“It was full of old furniture and other discarded stuff. There was a ‘shivling’ like structure inside. But as per Zafar’s listing, it is a tomb. It was locked and hence the restorers needed police protection as no one could enter a locked premises,” he said.
It wasn’t painted until two months ago, he added.
“Whenever the department tried to take over its possession, residents opposed. The police were informed several times but that did not help also,” he said.