Hyderabad\'s 350-year-old \'Mushk Mahal\' faces encroachment

Hyderabad: The nearly six acres of open land surrounding the 350-year-old Qutub Shahi edifice Mushk Mahal in Attapur are under threat from land sharks and encroachers.

Poles, fences, and other markers and construction materials were found dumped at the sprawling campus of the mahal on Tuesday morning. Locals in the vicinity of the mahal summoned a few heritage enthusiasts to the spot to gather evidence and approach the relevant authorities to prevent encroachments by land sharks.

By Wednesday noon, the material had been removed off the land, while some men lingered nearby to keep an eye on what was going on.

As word of the encroachment spread, history aficionados banded together to urge the GHMC)and other relevant authorities to act quickly. "The government is taking steps to revive and restore historical structures to their former splendour. We hope this historical monument will be added to the list soon as well. It is incredibly crucial to conserve this piece of architecture because it is the sole remaining example of a Qutub Shahi Palace in existence,"said Dr Mohammed Safiullah, Deccan Heritage Trust's honorary managing trustee.

According to a member of the Telangana State Wakf Board, the land is currently being claimed by descendants of a certain Kantha Reddy, which is illegal because the land is not mentioned in the gazette and the ownership is disputed. "People used to try to grow jowar on this land until recently. We alerted the appropriate authorities, who took the necessary action,” he said.

The palace was once a magnificent building, but it is now nothing more than a collection of crumbling ruins. Even as we passed by, a young man was spotted approaching the palace's inside, lighting a cigarette and prepared to relieve himself.

"This is a frequent sight," Rahim, who was collecting debris dropped nearby, stated. "It's almost like the neighborhood's public toilet," he remarked. He and Mahesh Kullu gathered trash, including some old cables, papers, broken books, bags, and so on, to kindle a fire and then departed the Mushk Mahal as if it were normal. As one moved around, one noticed that the central portion of the ground floor was inhabited by pigs that were freely roaming around.

( Source : Deccan Chronicle. )
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