Conservation experts begin vetting into Gold Leaf quality

Photographic report to ascertain the differences, if any

Conservation experts begin vetting into Gold Leaf quality

In a significant development pertaining to gold leaf painting scam at Amba Vilas Palace in the city, a team of experts from National Regional Laboratory for Conservation of Cultural Property (NRLCCP), Lucknow have started examining the quality of painting, from Thursday.

The experts are expected to submit their report within two months.

A team of experts, led by the director of NRLCCP B V Kharbade, accompanied by Lokayukta police investigating into the alleged irregularities in the works, inspected the Darbar Hall.

They closely examined the pillars of Darbar Hall for sometime. Later, they sought detailed information from the Palace Board, on the works executed between 2007 and 2013 covering 7,989 square feet of the Palace area.

Once the blue print is prepared, the experts will ascertain the quality, with the help of ‘X-ray fluoroscent machine’, specially brought for the purpose.

Speaking to the media on the Palace premises, Kharbade clarified that prior to ascertaining the quality of the works, a standard procedure has to be followed in the case of heritage buildings.

 “A photographic report has to be prepared including the previous and current stage of the works to find out the differences, if any. However, there are no such evidences, and it has come to light that the painting has been damaged by removing the old layers, in the name of conservation of heritage building,” he said.

Opposition

Meanwhile, historian P V Nanjaraj Urs took exception to the experts committee led by Kharbade examining the works. Urs who charged Kharbade before the media persons, alleged that it was unfair on the part of authorities concerned to entrust the task to the same person (Kharbade) who had earlier evaluated part of the works.

The works had been executed in two stages between 2007 and 2010, covering 1,300 feet of works, and during 2013. At that time, when the Palace Board had sought the opinion of Kharbade, he had validated the same. Urs said that he would write a letter to Lokayukta Justice Y Bhaskar Rao in this regard.

On the other hand, Lokayukta SP S M Jagadeesh Prasad said that another letter had been written to Chief Secretary Kaushik Mukherjee to transfer the incumbent deputy director of the Palace Board T S Subramanya to facilitate the ongoing investigation.

Subramanya is the second accused in the case, and Lokayukta ADGP H N Satyanarayan Rao had written a similar letter to the Chief Secretary earlier too.

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