Dept of Archaeology tells KMC not to demolish Bagh Durbar

- Post Report, Kathmandu

Oct 26, 2017-The Department of Archaeology (DoA) has sent a letter to the Kathmandu Metropolis (KMC), instructing the latter not to demolish the historic Bagh Durbar for reconstruction.

The palace building, which was repurposed as the KMC office, had suffered serious damage in the 2015 earthquake. 

The metropolis is planning to strip the building down and rebuild it from the scratch. The DoA has, however, advised the KMC against the plan. 

The archaeology authority says the palace building can be used after retrofitting.   

The DoA intervention was prompted after the National Reconstruction Authority (NRA) raised its concern over the KMC’s plan to pull down the palace building.

DoA Director General Bhesh Narayan Dahal said the retrofitting suggestion was offered by the engineers who had inspected the palace building after the earthquake. 

“There is no need to demolish the structure and we have communicated our concern as well as our suggestion to the metropolis,” he said. 

Since renovation and reconstruction of heritage sites and historic buildings cannot be carried out without the DoA’s approval, the KMC will have to shelve its plan for now.

The KMC had recently commissioned a company to demolish Bagh Durbar. The project cost was estimated at Rs 30 million.

Mayor Bidhya Sundar Shakya said the KMC decided to demolish the building because retrofitting was going to cost higher than rebuilding. 

He also claimed that the KMC had not received any letter from the DoA, though the latter said the correspondence was made on Tuesday. 

“We are yet to receive the letter. The metropolis will decide its future move on the issue after a meeting with the archaeology department and the reconstruction authority,” Shakya said.

Published: 26-10-2017 07:28

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