Silk factory building heritage: Archives department snubs JKPSC plans

Silk factory building heritage: Archives department snubs JKPSC plans
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SRINAGAR: The Archives department of the state has snubbed the J&K Public Service Commission’s (JKPSC) proposal of meddling with the heritage a heritage building.
Sources told Kashmir Reader that JKPSC had sought no objection certificate from Archives department for allowing them to use part of 100-year-old silk factory in Rajbagh as an examination centre, for which they had already looped in R&B department.
Interestingly, last month, R&B department demolished a heritage dispensary in old city, removing its roof and first floor, without knowledge of Archives department. The demolition was put to halt after Kashmir Reader reported about it.
“In a letter, PSC has asked for allowing them to renovate the silk factory. They have also asked for road widening,” sources said.
However, Kashmir Reader has learnt that archives department has written back, telling them it cannot be used as an examination hall as the building spread over 52 kanals, and 5 marlas, is protected under heritage act.
The PSC has been trying to hard to get the building for use as an examination hall and had taken up the matter with the chief minister, R&B Minister and Deputy Commissioner, sources said. Except R&B department none was so far convinced, sources said.
“Last year, a meeting was conveyed in which R&B minster was part. They were discussing various aspect of the building including its usage,” said sources, adding that Archives department, which is the custodian of the building, was not even invited.
At present silk factory, locally known as Reshim Khana, is a ramshackle, long, single-storey building. It has filature houses, a water storage house and the ramshackle office building, set up more than 120 years ago by Dogra ruler Maharaja Pratap Singh.