Welcome to INTACH Delhi Chapter

Journey So Far

Chapter Convenors   Chapter Co-Convenors  
1984 - 1987 Ms. Malvika Singh 1986 - 1987 Ms. Roula Sriram
1987 – 1995 Prof. E. F. N. Ribeiro 1987 – 1990 Lt. Gen. Dubey
1995 – 2007 Mr. O. P. Jain 1995 – 2002 Ms. Roula Sriram
2007 – Till Present Prof. A. G. K. Menon 2002 – 2007 Dr. Shobita Punja Prof. K.T.Ravindran
2007 – Till Present Ms. Swapna Liddle

Chronology of Events
(1984 – Till Present)

2008 - 09

Agreement signed with ASI for conserving tombs in Lodi Gardens. Work on WMF project completed. Municipal Corporation of Delhi (MCD) to implement proposals made for Feroz Shah Kotla precinct and ASI the area in front of Purana Qila. Proposals for signage presented to ASI.

2007 - 08

Completed the conservation work of phase VI of Mehrauli Archaeological Park. Submitted a proposal for conservation for phase VII of Mehrauli Archaeological Park. Signed an MOU with Government of National Capital Territory of Delhi to develop Delhi as heritage city. Introduced three new heritage walks in addition to the earlier two which have become very popular amongst the local people and tourists. In association with Indian Express conducting regular walks at different heritage sites. Received a grant from World Monument Fund (WMF) for developing the Delhi Heritage Route Project. Signed an MOU with Department of Archaeology, government of Delhi for the protection, conservation and development of 92 monuments. Some upcoming projects finalized were the revitalization of Coronation Park in North Delhi and designing of a museum in the historic Qudsiya Bagh near Kashmere Gate. Plans prepared to conserve centrally protected monuments located in Lodi Garden in association with ASI. This is being funded by the Steel Authority of India through the National Cultural Fund

2006 - 07

Engaged in projects related to conservation of unprotected monuments in Mehrauli Archaeological park, conservation of ruins of tomb of Nasiruddin, revitalization of Coronation Park in North Delhi and designing of a museum. Completed the signage for 167 heritage buildings and conservation areas in Delhi. Continued to conduct heritage walks. Published and distributed copies of Delhi The Built Heritage and three booklets on Buildings, Trees and Birds of Lodi Garden. Conducted 2 weeks workshop with International Laboratory for Architecture and Urban Design (ILAUD) on conservation of Shahjahanabad along with four foreign universities.

2005 - 06

In association with DC Publishers published the book The Delhi No-One Knows by RV Smith about the legends, myths and folklore surrounding Delhi’s monuments. Published the Delhi Guide funded by Reliance Infocom Ltd. Conducted a heritage walk on 5 June on World Environment Day which was attended by 100 doctors from the Delhi Medical Association and the Indian Medical Association. In association with DDA, undertook the conservation of the ruins of the tomb Nasiruddin Mahmud. Successful in getting the Police Memorial shifted and in diverting the Delhi Metro away from the Qutub Minar. Made a presentation to Lt. Governor for celebrating the centenary of Durbar where coronation of King George took place. It was decided to develop the Coronation Park. Continued to organize heritage walks with trained guides which included a heritage walk arranged for Spastic Society of Delhi.

2004 - 05

Completed conservation of buildings in Mehrauli Archaeological Park. Set up a heritage walk through the Mehrauli Archaeological Park. Organized a seminar on Management and Restoration of Historic Sites. Selected 25 people for training in conducting heritage walks through Shahjahanabad and Mehrauli Archaeological Park. As a result of the writ petition filed by the Chapter and the efforts made by Heritage Legislation Cell, in February 2004, the government of India sanctioned Heritage Regulations for Delhi. The heritage regulations specify that permission for development or redevelopment of listed buildings or listed heritage precincts shall be granted on the advice of the Heritage Conservation Committee to be appointed by the government. A major step ahead was taken when Heritage Conservation Committee was constituted with key members of INTACH on it.

2003 - 04

Primarily engaged with the ongoing conservation of unprotected monuments in the Mehrauli Archaeological Park adjoining the Qutub World Heritage Site. Completed work on four buildings (Quli Khan Tomb, Gateway, Service quarters, Retaining Walls and Staircases) and the first phase of the Heritage Trail linking all the buildings with 30 trail marks and 50 benches along the pathway. Commenced work on the restoration of State Bank of India building in Chandni Chowk. Sent petition against the construction of the Police Memorial which would obstruct the view of the Rashtrapti Bhavan dome.

2002 - 03

The passion projects of the Chapter continued to make steady progress. They included the restoration of an unprotected Lodi period monument Jamali Kamali, conservation of a Gumti in proximity of Qutub Minar and the installation of signage at 30 selected heritage buildings. Organized a teacher training workshop attented by 56 teachers from 34 schools and a talk on heritage of Delhi for the benefit of municipal councilors. Filed a PIL in the Supreme Court seeking protection for listed heritage buildings.

2001 - 02

Organized a cultural program to mark the culmination of the conservation work at St. James Church. Successful in new construction around the Qutub Minar, a world heritage site demolished, by alerting the ASI, DDA and the national media leading to a subsequent court order for the restoration of the Lal Kot Wall. Saved the heritage building of Hindustani Dawakhana from getting demolished by PWD due to timely intervention. Organised numerous awareness programmes like heritage walks; a talk on the World Heritage Cities and Sites by Peter Burman, Director, Centre for Conservation, University of York; an illustrated presentation and panel discussion on Delhi The Built Heritage: Process and Future, on the occasion of World heritage Day.

2000 - 01

Celebrated World Heritage day on 18 April in association with the India Habitat Centre (IHC) with focus on Framing India’s Architectural Heritage. Published two heritage maps – Buildings of Lodi Gardens and Trees of Lodi Gardens. They represent a comprehensive strategy of preserving this much used green lung of Delhi and because a good model for undertaking heritage maps in other parts of the country.

1999 - 2000

Completed the landmark project of listing with the publication of Delhi The Built Heritage: A Listing. In two volumes, this 800 page publication contains 1200 photographs and 100 maps, lists over 1200 buildings and 26 conservation areas. Hon’ble Prime Minister Shri A. B. Vajpayee released to the publication.

1998 - 99

Conducted a survey of many of the monuments of Delhi and concluded that heritage buildings were in poor condition. Submitted a report to the authorities on the survey hoping that the government would pass legislation to protect these buildings.

1996 - 98

Listing of the historical monuments of the city completed and prepared for publication. Process of restoration of 20 monuments within the Mehrauli region, near Qutub Minar continued. The Indo-British Fiftieth Anniversary Trust identified four restoration projects. They were the garden and water works of Humayun’s Tomb; repair, replaster and damp proofing of St. james Church besides landscaping of its surroundings; developing the DDA archaeological park and linking the 20 monuments in the park within a trail; setting up a Lutyens Delhi Foundation for maintaining the Lutyen’s Centre for urban regeneration and an archive of Lutyen’s Plans. Organized a panel discussion and a presentation on World Heritage Day on Integrated Conservation of Mehrauli Area through positive intervention into socio-cultural and economic processes of the city.

1996 – 97

Work in DDA archaeological area of Mehrauli taken up for implementation by DTDC. The work includes landscaping of the area and restoration of 20 monuments.

1995 – 96

Invited Dr. Alfred Fisher and Mr. Sep Waugh from London to undertake restoration stained glass windows in St. James Church. A training workshop under the supervision of the two stained glass experts was concluded. Filed a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) in association with CSD demanding a stay on the proposed demolition of the canopy at India Gate. The High Court restrained the removing of the canopy in the interest of architectural identity. A detailed survey of listing once again undertaken in January 1996. Each building to be photo documented and plotted on a zonal map for integration into the Delhi Master Plan. Filed another PIL in association with CSD against renaming of Connaught Place and Connaught Circus as Rajiv Chowk and Indira Chowk respectively.

1994 – 95

Collaborated with other NGOs in a workshop devoted to issues related to conservation of the Delhi Ridge. Commenced work on restoration of St. James Church.

1993 – 94

Received finances from Lt. Governor’s office for restoration of St. James Church. Coordinated with the residents of Nizamuddin East in filing a writ petition against the proposed expansion of the Nizamuddin Railway Station. Undertook the exercise of recompilation of listed buildings publication.

1992 – 93

Further work undertaken for listing of buildings in Delhi. Advised on the identification of specific sub zones for the Delhi plan 2001. Involved actively in the Mehrauli Heritage Project. Assisted the authorities in the formulation of new traffic circulation and traffic regulations in and around Connaught Place Worked with the Ministry of Urban Development on the methodology for prevention of misuse of bye-laws by private builders. In association with CSD published a pictorial booklet on interesting walks in Mehrauli.

1991 – 92

Initiated measures to raise funds for restoration of St. James Church. A project in association with Delhi Tourism Development Corporation (DTDC) to restore and upgrade Bhuli Bhatyari Ki Mahal, an ancient archaeological site in West Delhi gets underway. The concept plan includes reuse proposal for the monument. A restaurant to be promoted by DTDC on the site whose design is to be in harmony with the monument and its surroundings.

1989 – 90

Began working on the Hauz Khas heritage area development which included the adjoining park and the village. Initiated protest against relaxation of FAR/FSI rules in Delhi.

1988 – 89

Convinced the Delhi Development Authority (DDA) to shift the Botanical garden from the environment of Mehrauli since it has been declared an archaeological zone. Location of Botanical garden to be decided in consultation with the Chapter. Joined hands with like minded organizations like Conservation Society of Delhi (CSD), the Indian Heritage Society (IHS), the Institute of Town Planners (ITP), the Indian Institute of Architects (IIA) etc. to oppose the arbitrary increase in floor area ratios, heights and parking norms in key areas of Delhi. Intervened in the location of second Inter State Bus Terminus in Delhi and inter-alia salvaged the environment of zoo and Nizamuddin monuments. Helped the authorities by serving on various committees that ensure proper cleaniless and lighting of selected monuments in Delhi, the improvement of livability in the walled city and general guidelines on the orderly growth of Delhi. Convinced the DDA to create a Heritage Zone Cell within DDA t o become a reference point for the state in all matters pertaining to heritage conservation in Delhi. Mehrauli, the most historical urban village of Delhi recognized as Heritage Zone. Chapter’s report on Conservation of Mehrauli approved by DDA which is expected to form part of the statutory plan for Delhi and serve as an example for Heritage Zone planning in rest of Delhi and elsewhere in India.

1987 – 88

Prevented the construction of the Inter State Bus Terminus near the Purana Qila. Sought a court order to prevent the sale and demolition of the Chaumachi Tomb in Mehrauli.

1986 - 87

The Nizamuddin project proposals included upgrading, cleaning and landscaping the area around the Dargah. Cleaning of the baoli in the area was undertaken. Chausath Khambha partially restored as an ASI-INTACH collaboration. A proposal to restore and upgrade Urs Mahal forwarded to the government. In depth documentation of old Delhi and New Delhi with scaled maps, photographs, data, etc. begun.

1985 - 86

The listing of buildings of historic importance in Delhi completed. Nizamuddin Basti and the surrounding areas identified as a conservation and environment protection areas. Dialogue initiated with Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) to take up restoration of Chausath Khambha and its surroundings.

1984 - 85

Work on the listing of unprotected monuments around Delhi commenced. Plans for conservation of Nizamuddin drawn up.