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Even After A Decade, Vmc Yet To List, Notify City’s Heritage Structures | Vadodara News – Times of India

Vadodara: Every time a heritage building in the city is razed or becomes dilapidated due to neglect, the civic administration seems to find itself in a helpless situation. This is due to the fact that despite waiting for over a decade now, the Vadodara Municipal Corporation (VMC) is yet to form its Heritage Conservation Committee (HCC) that could notify the heritage in the city.
The civic body had sent a letter to the state government with regard to formation of the committee in line with the 2012 General Development and Construction Rules (GDCR) making it mandatory for the civic bodies to make lists and grade heritage as per its significance.
According to the submissions by the civic body, the letter was sent to the state government on February 27, 2013, during the hearing of a public interest litigation (PIL) regarding the Nazarbaug Palace demolition.
Architect and state co-convener of the Indian National Trust for Art and Cultural Heritage (INTACH) Sanjeev Joshi who was among the petitioners in the PIL, said that the high court had ordered that the committee should be formed within three months in the order on the PIL. Court had also taken up the issue of formation of a HCC and listing as well as grading of the heritage in the city.
Even before the order, a tentative list of heritage in the city was prepared by experts and architecture students in the city. The list included 152 sites with a scope of improving on the list. The list was prepared over 2012 and 2013 and was submitted to the civic body. But there were no further developments on this front.
The tentative list includes 132 built structures and 20 natural heritage sites. The issue was also raised in a general board meeting in 2013 and councillors demanded information on the progress on this front.
The list was prepared by a group of architecture students from five different architecture schools – department of architecture of the MS University, Navrachana University, Vadodara Design Institute, Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel Institute of Technology and Arvindbhai Patel Institute of Environment Design. The work was supervised by senior faculties of these institutes even as two of these colleges considered the work as a part of the academics at the institutes.
Joshi said that the row over the plans to raze the Pushpakoot bungalow where legendary cricketer Vijay Hazare had stayed was an opportunity to set up the HCC. “This can begin the process of notification and registration of heritage structures which needed to be protected for the identity of the city,” said Joshi.
A VMC official said that he was not aware regarding the developments so far and will look into the issue. Team Vadodara, a thinktank, that is looking to develop the heritage in the city among other issues, has also taken up work on the matter.

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