Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Bangalore heritage will now ABIDe with its past

Bangalore heritage will now ABIDe with its past

Express News Service First Published : 27 May 2009 05:05:00 AM ISTLast Updated : 27 May 2009 12:10:27 PM IST
BANGALORE: Finally, Bangalore’s past will be dressed up for its future.
The Agenda for Bengaluru Infrastructure Development (ABIDe) Task Force has recommended to the government the setting up of a nodal agency for the identification, protection and conservation of heritage sites in the Bangalore Metropolitan Region.
The statutory nodal agency will conserve sites that are not within the jurisdiction of the Archaeological Survey of India or the state archaeological department. Funding for the heritage commission will be made available under the BBMP or BDA budgets, ABIDe member Prof. Ashwin Mahesh announced in Bangalore on Tuesday.
He said that the documentation of Bangalore’s heritage will be an ongoing programme. Specific restoration plan for heritage sites will be developed and the ongoing development plans of the civic bodies will be subject to guidelines for protection of such sites.
For this purpose, members of the heritage commission will have a fixed tenure of five years and the commission’s secretariat will be with the urban development department.
If all goes according to plan, the policy framework will be ready in at least three months.
The panel will maintain an online registry which will have an exhaustive compilation of heritage locations.
This online register will be maintained and updated every three years to reflect the evolving character of the city.
A museum housing permanent archives and gallery of the built, natural and cultural heritage sites of Bangalore will be established at Mayo Hall. Also, a heritage cell will be set up to manage publicly-owned heritage locations. A specific conservation plan, including awareness campaigns, will be developed for such locations.
ABIDe’s recommendation to the government will also make it easier for Bangalore’s citizens and its visitors to see the heritage sites. Access will be provided to each site and tourism promotion programmes will also be developed.
A specific date will also be identified to mark the founding day of the city and to celebrate its history.
Sanjay Sridhar, member of ABIDe said, “At present, there is no balance between development and conservation of heritage.” With this heritage project, hopefully that balance will be achieved.


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