History & Culture

Dehradun authorities break historic structure

DEHRADUN: Heritage buffs in the city have expressed anger after a colonial-era heritage structure – a concrete trough for horses – at Rajpur Road was demolished.

The structure was flattened while repair work was being carried out on the road near the President’s Bodyguards Estate ahead of Pranab Mukherjee’s visit, reports The Times of India.

The President along with his entourage will be in Dehradun from September 27 and the district administration is busy sprucing up the palatial colonial estate, also known as ‘Ashiyana’. It was developed exclusively for the well-trained horses of the governor general (GG) guards in the 1830s. Back in the day, horses would often be seen quenching their thirst at the trough.

Expressing shock at the demolition, Reenu Paul, president, Rajpur Community Initiatives, a citizen forum, said, “It is appalling to find that the trough has been demolished so that tiles could be fixed in the name of beautification. There was no need to demolish the trough in the first place and it shows that the civic agencies are indifferent to heritage conservation.”

Lokesh Ohri, head, INTACH, Dehradun chapter, added, “I find it baffling that instead of conserving heritage structures in Dehradun, the authorities demolished it in the name of beautification and road widening. In western countries, places of historical value are conserved for tourism purposes and for the future generation but no one is giving a serious thought to save heritage sites in Uttarakhand.”

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