What is TS govt's stand on golf course at Golkonda? HC directs state to file counter

Chief Justice Ujjal Bhuyan asked the GP for the irrigation department, Mr. Harish, what the state government and Wakf Board’s stand is on having a golf course within the Golkonda Fort.

By Newsmeter Network  Published on  11 Nov 2022 2:30 AM GMT
What is TS govts stand on golf course at Golkonda? HC directs state to file counter

Hyderabad: The Telangana High Court Division Bench comprising Chief Justice Ujjal Bhuyan and Justice C.V Bhaskar, on Thursday, heard two PILs—one alleging damage to the Golkonda Fort and the other seeking to preserve Naya Quila Talab (Lake) at Golkonda.

One of the petitioner's counsel, B. Rachna Reddy, informed the court that a lot of areas were destroyed for the golf course at Golkonda. She asserted that the Golconda Fort is a protected monument and the state government can carry out archeological and other activities but the entire structure of the monument cannot be destroyed for a golf course.

Stating that people want to protect the historical Golconda Fort, she said that due to the golf course the historical structure is demolishing and changing. "In fact, we have submitted photographs to the court. Moreover, if we go on without any presentation activity, the monument is not going to remain the same as it was," Ms. Rachna Reddy averred.

Chief Justice Ujjal Bhuyan asked the GP for the irrigation department, Mr. Harish, what the state government and Wakf Board's stand is on having a golf course within the Golkonda Fort.

Mr. Harish sought some more time to get instructions from the government.

Irked over the GP's submission, Chief Justice Bhuyan said, "The matter is pending for 10 years and you seek some more time to file the counter?"

Mr. Harish informed the court that Naya Talab in Golkonda is intact and there is no obstruction to the Naya Talab as of now. The collector concerned has also filed, in June 2021, a status report on the Naya Talab, he added.

Senior Counsel S. Ravi, appearing for the Hyderabad Golf Course, informed the court that the golf course has taken permission from the Archeological Survey of India (ASI).

Further, Mr. Ravi submitted that in the Golkonda Fort premises at Jawarikunta, where a garbage dump is located, grass work has been done but no further work has been done anywhere in the Golkonda fort premises. He added that Delhi's historical Qutub Minar also has a grass course but it has not been made controversial in any manner.

Counsel Ravi informed the court that litigation has been continuing for over 15 years and said the allegation of fort damage is baseless.

In the Naya Quila, the court has earlier considered and permitted grass work in the entire area and no part of the fort is damaged, asserted Mr. Ravi.

Counsel for ASI, B. Mukherjee, informed the court that ASI has filed a counter affidavit on 16 December 2017.

The CJ Division Bench, after hearing all the contentions, directed the counsel for the Archeological Survey of India to circulate all the counter copies of ASI to all the parties.

Further, the Bench directed the respondent government authorities to file a status report on the alleged damage to the Golkonda Fort.

For further hearing, the matter was adjourned to 14 December.

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