Slammed for neglect, authorities say replica of century-old property to come up in its place
The century-old ancestral house of Bollywood thespian Dilip Kumar in Peshawar has collapsed, but authorities have said a replica would soon come up at the site. Only the facade and the gate are intact, said Shakeel Waheedullah, general secretary of the Cultural Heritage Council.
Prominent members of the city criticised the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) government for neglecting the preservation of the iconic structure in Mohalla Khuda Dad near historic Qissa Khawani bazaar.
It was declared national heritage in 2014 by the archaeology department. Waheedullah said he submitted six applications to the KP government to draw their attention to the condition of the house but in vain. He said Kumar’s wife, Saira Bano, has been informed about the condition of the house. “Saira Bano felt dejected after she came to know about the collapse,” he said.
Abdul Samad, director of Archaeology and Museums, Abdul Samad, however, called the cave in a “blessing in disguise” since it will give them a chance to reconstruct the house. He said the archaeology department would soon construct a replica of the house under the KP Antiquities Act 2016.
Conservation efforts were halted due to litigation relating to ownership. The new law, however, allows the archaeology department to carry on conservation or reconstruction work at any ancient site without ownership.