Construction of cafe, toilets in front of Salar Jung Museum gate draws ire

Museum director flags safety hazard; GHMC officials say work suspended till further orders

Hyderabad: The construction of a cafeteria and public toilets on the pavement abutting Musi river opposite Salar Jung Museum has raised sanitation concerns among the public and safety concerns for the director of the museum.

In an order issued by GHMC on 13 June, 2023, M/s Swach Management Services was permitted to “provide supply and delivery of cafeteria with public toilets under safe city project Hyderabad, Circle 9 Charminar zone.” The construction, however, began recently.

A handful of workers descended on the pavement opposite the Salar Jung Museum entrance gate and started digging up the soil as part of the construction activity. When local people and the museum staff enquired about it, they were surprised to know that a public toilet was coming up right opposite the magnificent museum building.

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“The spot chosen for construction of public toilets is not appropriate. It should have been constructed somewhere towards the Shivaji Bridge. It ruins the look and ambience of the museum and its surroundings,” said Mohd Nayeem, a local trader.

Many prominent personalities, including VVIPs, visit the Salar Jung Museum. The building is guarded round the clock by the Central Industrial Security Force personnel.

The director of the museum, Dr A Nagender Reddy (IRPS), said, “A restaurant and toilets are being constructed in front of the museum. This will not only be a safety and security hazard, but will also affect the ambience of the museum.”

He further highlighted that such construction will also prove unsafe for the retention wall of Musi river.

Speaking with, GHMC executive engineer Charminar zone, Hari Kishore, said, “We received a call from town planning department on Tuesday afternoon after a complaint was raised. We have suspended the construction work till further orders.”

D Dakhu Naik, deputy commissioner, Circle 9 of GHMC, said they will conduct an inspection on Wednesday. “A complaint was received. For the time being the work was stopped and after inspection we will take a decision,” he said.

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