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Hyderabad: Not far from one of the top tourist attractions of Hyderabad, the Golconda Fort, Khazana Building, a State Archaeology Museum housed in building of Qutub Shahi era remains inaccessible to the common man for last five years. Even though renovation works were completed at an estimated cost of Rs 50 lakh, doors of gallery remain ‘officially sealed’. Ironically, the artefacts have been left in the open, under neglected condition.

According to locals, till five years ago, tourists who used to visit Golconda Fort also used to visit the museum where artefacts belonging to pre-historic period to Qutub Shahi era were on display. Later the authorities closed the museum stating that it needs renovation as the building which is spread over one acre was in dilapidated condition. All the artefacts which includes stone sculptures of Kakatiya period and royal palanquin of the Qutub Shahi era were moved out of the building.

The works that were taken up in 2013 were completed last year but still the rooms continue to remain under lock and seal. According to Abdul Salam, who is in charge of the museum, said, “if the museum is opened it would help in revenue generation. The artefacts have historical importance and need to be protected.”

The renovation work was taken up under 13th Financial Commission Grants and administrative sanction was given in November 2013. Estimation value of renovation was Rs 50 lakh, which was spent on removal of vegetation, demolition of decayed plaster, providing flooring inside the rooms and pathways, plastering of walls, construction of toilet and gates.

According to official sources, non-release of funds and lack of personnel in the department of Archaeology and Museums had delayed its reopening. However, the top officials do not appear to be aware that the museum continues to remain closed. 

When asked about it N R Visalatchy, Director of Archaeology and Museums, said to The Hans India that the Museum was not closed. “It is open and people are allowed and the gallery was accessible to people,” he said. This is a glaring example of how the top bosses are not aware of the ground reality.­

By Md Nizamuddin