| something similar going on in
| old delhi as well, right?
COLABA: Two NGO-cum-citizens’ groups are waging a war over the decor of
the Gateway of India.
After the government approved the Indian National Trust for Culture and
Heritage’s (INTACH) restoration plans for the ‘Gateway Plaza’ in October
2005, a group of local residents have come out against it.
Now showing: Heritage activist vs impoverished village
Sunday, March 26, 2006 01:03 IST
“INATCH had held an event here without permission and had promised to
give us money which they have not. Now they want us to move our stalls
Meanwhile, Mehta says she is tired of the villagers’ allegations, and
has threatened to sue Padte for libel and slander. “They are
personalising the issue,” she says. “This seems to be their last resort.
INTACH has made no monetary gain out of this. Our efforts are part of
our social commitment to the site.”
We have a World Heritage site, but we are in a backward area. We earn
lakhs from foreign tourists, but none of it is used for maintenance.
Since we are not a huge vote bank, no government will comply with the
demands of a mere 1,200 residents. It is not about 1,200 people, it is
about the 10 lakh tourists.
I will sue Padte for libel and slander. Even UNESCO has commended
INTACH’s work. Our work at Elephanta Caves is a social commitment. The
toy train Padte has built is an environmental hazard. He earns a lot
through it. He has built a restaurant outside the World Heritage site,
again an illegal construction.