Cannons found at Metro site to undergo chemical conservation

Cannons found at Metro site to undergo chemical conservation

Directorate of Archaeology yet to trace the history of cannons

Cannons found at Metro site to undergo chemical conservation

 Far from tracing the history of the cannons that were unearthed during excavations for the Metro project, the Archaeological Society of Indian (ASI) and the state’s Directorate of Archaeology are involved in a tennis match of sorts.

Two canons suspected to be from the Tipu Sultan’s era were discovered near Vani Vilas hospital in November 2012 by the workers on the site of Metro construction.

Six months down the line, the responsibility of investigating and preserving the canons is being shunted back and forth between the Central and the state’s archeological departments. In fact, the offices of both the departments were not clear about where the cannons even were.

Deputy Superintending Archaeologist T M Keshava of ASI while admitting that the cannons were handed over to them by Bangalore Metro Rail Corporation Limited stated, “Under the Indian Treasure Trove Act, anything found below the ground is the property of the respective state. Hence, the ASI had transferred the authority over two months ago to the state Directorate of Archeology and Museum.”

This was news to the office of the Directorate, located now in Mysore, which has remained oblivious to the development.  All the officials Deccan Herald contacted in Mysore  firmly believed that the canons are indeed in possession of ASI and they had nothing to do with it.

On museum premises

Finally, the cannons were traced to the Karnataka Government Museum on Kasturba Road here, where the offices of the Directorate were located earlier. It has now emerged that the Directorate plans to send the cannons back to ASI as they have no knowledge for their preservation.

The authorities at the museum confirmed the transfer and said the cannons will shortly undergo a process of chemical conservation and will be sent to the Regional Conservation Laboratory (RCL) of the ASI for this procedure.

. While admitting that the canons were handed over to them earlier this year and the paperwork was completed two months ago, one of the officials of the Directorate remarked that the cannons are lying on their premises while they are awaiting the procedure of transfer to the ASI RCL. “The process of transfer is still on paper and take its due course of time.”

They added that the process of chemical conservation would take over three to four months and an action plan and budget allocation were being planned.

Sources also clarified that the Directorate, which was handed the responsibility over three months back, has been unable to decipher any historical facts of the two cannons and it was left to the ASI to figure it out. However, they were quick to remark that they did not expect any more cannons around the area and termed them as ‘stray cannons.’

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