December 07, 2005

Sekar Gupta's take on Incredible India's Heritage

Sekar Gupta vents out his anger is a rather "feel-bad" Article on the way our Heritage structures are maintained.
Entire Article - India's Incredible Junk Yards can be accessed in Indian Express.

In June, Indian Express had a series of reports on the various "jewels" of our heritage right from TajMahal to Sun Temple.

An effort worth appreciating !!

Experts from Sekar Gupta's report on Madurai'Meenakshi Temple & Tanjavur's Big temple

"But you walk in through any of the spectacular entrances and chances are you would wonder if you have come into one of the finest temples built in the history of mankind, or a makeshift bazaar. Right along the temple alleys leading to the 12 gopurams you have shops on both sides, selling everything, from the usual curios and souvenirs to buckets, brooms, bags, spices, soaps and oils, shaving brushes, Made in China flashlights, underwear and banyans, almost anything you might need in the course of a day. What, you wonder, is this supermarket doing in the bowels of a temple that now claims, quite deservedly, to compete with the Taj Mahal and others for the title of the seventh wonder?"

thousand-pillar hall - "They have converted it into a museum which is not the ideal thing to do, but acceptable, if only the “museum” looked anything like you’d expect it to be. There are random, poorly labelled exhibits piled into wooden show windows with soiled glazing and decaying sides. You even see one most distressing exhibit, some attire worn by the deity, now fully eaten by termites, a few strands of the clothing still hanging on top of a heap of dust. Sure enough, there is a sign on the window saying, delicate, do not touch! Delicate indeed, it is now dust."

Sekar is bit mellowed down when it comes to hammering Tanjavur -
"you think at least this part is still in reasonable shape. No shops, no squatters, no filth."
"you look at the parikrama where, in typical southern tradition, you would expect to find rows of sculpture in continuous walkways. You do find some sculpture, but mostly you find bags of cement and debris, concrete mixers, other tools and junk. These are areas from where old idols have disappeared, or removed into storage for repair and restoration and meanwhile the ASI is using these as a junk yard instead"

I just hope, the ASI wakes up to the ground realities, atleast for the sake of their own jobs...Comeon...if our heritages crumble & vanish, what will these people be paid for?

No comments: