KBy Muslim Mirror Staff
New Delhi: Members of the Indian National Trust for Art and Cultural Heritage (INTACH) urged Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar seeking his intervention to protect a portion of the historical Khuda Bakhsh Oriental Library from demolition, reported Times of India.
The front garden and a portion of the library will have to be demolished for construction an elevated road from Kargil Chowk to NIT Patna as proposed by the Bihar Pul Nirman Nigam Limited.
INTACH, Patna chapter convenor JK Lal said they will be writing a letter to the CM requesting him to protect the library and will also go for a public campaign.
The state chapter of INTACH held a meeting at the library on Saturday with director Shaista Bedar. State convenor Prem Sharan and member BC Shrivastava were also at the meeting.
“The Khuda Bakhsh Library, a ‘Dharohar of Bhartiya Sanskriti’ has been visited by eminent people such as Mahatma Gandhi, Lord Curzon, scientist CV Raman, Jawahar Lal Nehru, Rajendra Prasad, APJ Abdul Kalam and over dozens of Presidents of India, chief justices, foreign heads of states, ambassadors, scholars and litterateurs,” read a statement shared by the INTACH, adding because of such visits, adequate security arrangements are required and constraining the library will hamper.
Bedar said they had written to the DM last month requesting him to look for an alternative rather than interfering with a heritage building.
“We are not against any development, but development at the cost of such an important library is not justified. We have provided several other options to the district administration for easing traffic in this area. For instance, a road from Kargil Chowk, passing through Bankipore Club and back of Anta Ghat can be developed, along the bank of river Ganga.”
Bedar said the huge collection of this library attracts scholars from across the world and this library plays an important role in the field of education.
Khuda Bakhsh Oriental Library is known for its rare collection of Persian and Arabic manuscripts. It also hosts paintings made during the Rajput and Mughal eras of India.
It was opened to public on 29 October 1891 by Khan Bahadur Khuda Bakhsh with 4,000 manuscripts, of which he inherited 1,400 from his father Maulvi Mohammed Bakhsh.
It is an autonomous organization under Ministry of Culture, Government of India, and is governed by a Board with the Governor of Bihar as its ex officio Chairman.