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Urban Reality: Should private sector manage heritage monuments?

Updated : May 03, 2018 08:11 PM IST

When a historic site such as the Red Fort is given to a private company for maintaining its tourism infrastructure by the government, it is bound to whip up strong emotions.

Red Fort is, after all, the monument from the rampart of which, every prime minister since independence has addressed the nation.

When a monument of such significance is handed over to the Dalmia Bharat Group, whose business portfolio includes cement, sugar, power manufacturing, questions are bound to follow.

"The government has not handed over the Red Fort to Dalmia Group," Minister of State for Tourism KJ Alphons.

Defending the government's decision taken under the 'adopt a heritage' scheme, the minister asserted that Dalmia Group's only responsibility under this scheme would be to provide basic amenities at the Mughal era fort.

The minister also highlighted the poor condition of monuments and their surroundings in India to drive home the government's point in the debate.

Sohail Hashmi, Heritage Enthusiast, Muhammad Khan, Congress spokesperson, and Tasneem Zakaria Mehta, Managing Trustee of Dr Bhau Daji Lad Museum discussed whether the government has taken enough care, safeguards, and transparency to ensure that the most coveted of our national monuments goes to the most deserving.
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