Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) has refused permission sought by Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen MLA Kausar Mohiuddin for Muslims to offer prayers and perform rituals in the ancient mosques and dargah located inside the Golconda Fort.
On July 21, 2018, the MLA had written two letters to the superintendent of ASI, Hyderabad, but the request was turned down as ASI wants to maintain status quo.
In one of the letters, the Karwan MLA said, “I am receiving representations from people for the development of a dargah and small mosque situated near Ashoorkhana and Camel Khana situated in the fort.” He asked ASI to grant permission to ‘commence rituals’. “Visitors are causing damage and hurting the religious sentiments,” he said in the letter.
Kindly preserve heritage of state: ASI prof to MLA In the other letter, Majlis legislator Kausar Mohiuddin said, “The Taramathi mosque situated at the Golconda Fort near flag hoisting point, the Ibrahim mosque in Upper area of the Golconda fort, a small mosque located at the Akkanna Madanna complex, the Zanana mosque at Inner Mahal, and the inner dargha and small mosque located near Ashoorkhana are all ancient. These areas need to be fenced in order to ensure the protection of their heritage.”
The inner dargah near Ashoorkhana is called the Siddique Sahib Dargah and is located between the inner fortification walls of the Golconda fort, and ASI prohibits entry to general visitors at this dargah, as this is situated in a secluded place.
Superintending archaeologist at ASI Dr Milan Kumar Chauley, in his reply to All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (AIMIM) MLA Kausar Mohiuddin in a letter dated August 3, 2018, said, “The mosques at the Golconda Fort were not functional at the time they were handed over to ASI for protection. The status quo has to be maintained. Hence, prayers and religious practices cannot be allowed.” ASI, seconding the expert archeologist’s opinion, said, “Prayers at the once-abandoned mosques of Qutb Shahis cannot be permitted.”
ASI has now sought the help of the MLA to have the the mazar (mausoleum shrine ) illegally raised by the guides and localsrecently, removed as it was not part of original history or architecture of th eGolconda Fort.
Chauley instead urged AIMIM MLA Mohiuddin, “Kindly ask the locals, as you are their representative, to pull down their structures from near the ASI protected fortification walls to preserve the heritage of Telangana for posterity, and also to stop the illegal constructions.”
Chauley also remarked, “Despite several complaints filed by ASI with the state government to remove encroachments from the protected land, no action has been taken up so far.”
Courtesy: Times of India