Posted by Fenil Seta
MUMBAI MIRROR (June 16, 2017)
The century-old ancestral house of Dilip Kumar, situated in Peshawar’s Mohalla Khudadad, near the Qissa Khwani bazaar, which was already in a dilapidated condition, has collapsed. Authorities say a replica will come up soon under the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) Antiquities Act 2016. Currently only the front portion and the gate are intact, according to Shakeel Waheedullah, General Secretary, Cultural Heritage Council, Pakistan.
Prominent members of the city have criticised the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) government for neglecting the iconic structure even though it was declared a national heritage in 2014 by the archaeology department. Waheedullah informed that he had submitted six applications to the KP government but no action was taken. “Saira Banu was dejected after she learnt about the collapse,” he informed.
Director of Archaeology and Museums, Abdul Samad, however, said the damage was a “blessing in disguise” as it will give them a chance to reconstruct the house. He pointed out that the structure was in shambles and according to engineers couldn’t not be conserved. They were also road-blocked by litigation. However, the new law allows the archaeology department to carry on conservation or reconstruction work at any ancient site without ownership. Some of the biggest Bollywood stars, including Dilip Kumar, Prithiviraj Kapoor and his family, Shah Rukh Khan and the late Vinod Khanna came from Peshawar and their ancestral houses still exist in the city.
“We have launched a project to document all historic and ancient places within the Walled City of Peshawar and under the project, the replica of Dilip Kumar’s house will be reconstructed soon,” Samad assured.