Published: Mon, April 30, 2018
World News | By Laverne Osborne

Red Fort 'adoption' only for maintenance, no handing over involved

Red Fort 'adoption' only for maintenance, no handing over involved

Red Fort, India's most prominent historical monument has been adopted by Dalmia Bharat Group. The government, however, insisted that it was not for profits. Congress leader Pawan Khera said, "A monument where the flag fly's high, is being handed over to a private firm". He said that he can wipe out India's rich legacy.

Trinamool Congress chief Mamata Banerjee termed the decision a dark day in India's history. Does he even understand that even the 1857 struggle of Independence of India, where Bahadur Shah Zafar from Red Fort, Rani Jhansi, from Tantia Tope and many-many others from other different nooks and corner of the country, Red Fort became a symbol of Britishers oppression and rising of India in unison. All revenues generated from these "semi-commercial activities" would need to be deposited in a separate bank account that would be used only for developing and maintaining the monument. "You may have the MacDonalds Stadium but you certainly don't have the MacDonalds Lincoln Memorial".

Union Minister of State for Culture Dr. Mahesh Sharma on Saturday justified the move to allow corporate enterprises and individuals to adopt national heritage monuments under "adopt the heritage scheme".

The 77-year-old corporate conglomerate beat IndiGo Airlines and the GMR group to bag the contract worth Rs 25 crore spanning five years to maintain the fort. Under the scheme, the corporate house will construct, landscape, illuminate and maintain activities related to provision and development of tourist amenities which includes basic and advanced amenities such as public conveniences, clean drinking water, cleanliness of the monument, accessibility for all, signage, cloakroom facilities, illumination and night viewing, surveillance system, tourist facilitation-cum-interpretation centre. "Is it not true that the private company will now issue tickets to see the Red Fort?".

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"We have taken steps they could not take in 60 years".

"After handing over the Red Fort to the Dalmia group, which is the next distinguished location that the BJP government will lease out to a private entity?", the Congress party said in a message posted on Twitter. Maulana Mohammad Sajid Rashida of All India Imam Association asked, "Who gave the authority to the government to give the monument on the lease".

"Under the project, 31 agencies referred as "Monument Mitras" have been approved so far to adopt 95 monuments/ tourist sites located across India". At Dalmia Bharat, we take pride in Indian culture and practise it in the workplace. "Why is government putting at stake so much just in order to create some money?"

"Some services of the Red Fort has been given to the Dalmia group". It has the right to use its brand name on all kinds of publicity material to be displayed during events organised at the site and also on all signages. In this, Dalmia was successful in getting the group and GMR contract and ITC. It will also provide a 3-D projection mapping of the fort's interior and exterior, battery-operated vehicles and charging stations for such vehicles and a thematic cafeteria.

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