Comprehensive restoration plan for Kashmir's Samba Fort

Srinagar: A comprehensive plan for restoration of the Samba Fort has been conceived at an estimated cost of over Rs 4.87 crore as part of efforts to preserve historic places by Jammu and Kashmir government.

Over Rs 75 lakh have been spent on various works for the restoration of the fort believed to be first constructed in 13th century AD, an official spokesman said after a high- level meeting chaired by Chief Minister Omar Abdullah.

The meeting was convened here yesterday to take stock of the conservation programme of the Samba Fort, which has been declared an ancient monument under the Ancient Monuments Preservation Act 1920.

The government undertook restoration and conservation programme in March 2010.

The works so far undertaken include partial restoration of outer fort wall, restoration of water tank, clearance of wild vegetation inside and outside the fort, the spokesman said.

The fort was rebuilt by Raja Suchit Singh in 1830 on the remains of earlier fort built by Naga Raja Gour Sen.

The spokesman said conservation work of four more forts of Hari Parbhat, Bahu, Reasi and Hira Nagar is being executed by the Department of Culture and Tourism while Archaeological Survey of India is working on the restoration of Ram Nagar Fort.

Addressing the meeting, Omar called for holistic approach by the departments concerned to preserve historic and cultural speciality of the state.

He said Jammu and Kashmir possesses rich heritage and remarkable archaeological and architectural characteristics.

"This special phenomenon of the state needs focused attention," he said calling for preservation and protection of this glory.


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