Dogra Sadar Sabha (DSS) today called for proper safety of Archives records while expediting the restoration work of the Mubarak Mandi Palace Complex, Jammu in accordance with the rules and regulations of the Mubarak Mandi Jammu Heritage Society.
During the visit to the complex along with Sabha members and some other prominent citizens today DSS President Gulchain Singh Charak expressed serious concern over the delays in the restoration work of the Complex which occupies the pride of place as a primary heritage of Jammu region, and the handling of the centuries old archives records.
Charak thanked the Lt Governor Manoj Sinha for issuing necessary instructions to ensure that the fragile 300 years old record in the Archives and the priceless artifacts preserved in the Dogra Arts Museum were temporarily kept safe within the already restored erestwhile Army Headquarters, involving minimum dislocation, for restoration of respective buildings but shocked to see the way the record is being dumped on the floor of the rooms which is very dangerous as this precious record can be destroyed or badly damaged the way it is being treated.
He also pointed out that adequate space was required to be provided therein so that the brittle record is not damaged due to unscientific stacking. While pointing out, as per the news recently appeared in a section of press that, the Governing Body headed by the Lt. Governor has not met since March 2019 and various issues connected with expediting of the restoration work continue to languish, he appealed that meetings may be held regularly in accordance with the rules of the Mubarak Mandi Jammu Heritage Society.
He emphasized that the conservation work is required to be executed as per the Conservation Plan by expert agencies having experience in executing conservation works under the supervision of ASI/Conservation Architects.
The problems faced on ground by the Society’s management, the conservation consultant and the executing agencies of the Society need to be ascertained and placed before the Governing Body by the Executive Body of the Society so that necessary decisions are taken to provide solutions for expediting the work.
He recalled that at the initial stages over 70 meetings of the Executive Body were held during the first five years to give momentum to the conservation work of the complex, but it is a matter of concern that only a few meetings of the executive committee could be held in the proceeding years.
Charak further stressed that the rules of the Mubarak Mandi Jammu Heritage Society also need to be followed in letter and spirit to ensure citizen orientation in its functioning. Reports that the recent reconstitution of the Governing Body and the Executive Body of the Society without any non official members is cause for concern as it raises doubts about transparency in the functioning of the Society.
He also underlined the importance of restoration of the Mubarak Mandi Heritage Complex from the point of view of rejuvenation of the old city of Jammu and the positive impact on the overall economic scenario of the city, by extending the stay in Jammu of pilgrims coming for the Vaishno Devi Yatra once the restoration and development of the complex as cultural and heritage tourism attraction is completed. Besides, provision of the requisite facilities will also attract scholars interested in the history and culture of Jammu and Kashmir from within India and abroad.