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24 Indian Monuments ‘Missing’, Half From UP

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As many as 24 monuments under the charge of the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI)–the government agency responsible for national heritage–are “missing”, half from Uttar Pradesh (UP), according to a reply in the Lok Sabha (parliament’s lower house) on August 1, 2016.


The missing monuments include prehistoric megaliths in Maharashtra, rock inscriptions, megaliths, Buddhist and Hindu temple ruins in UP, guns of the 16th-century Afghan emperor Sher Shah in Assam, medieval milestones (kos minars) in Haryana, a temple in Uttarakhand and sundry tombs, cemeteries and other ruins.


Missing monuments are first declared “untraceable”, after which a detailed procedure commences. “The procedure to find out untraceable monuments involve verification of old record, revenue maps, referring published reports, physical inspections and deployment of teams to trace the missing monuments,” the minister of state for culture and tourism, Mahesh Sharma, told the Lok Sabha in a statement.


India’s Missing Monuments
S.No. State Place What’s Missing
1 Assam Sadia, Tinsukia Guns of Emperor Sher Shah
2 Arunachal Pradesh Paya, Lohit The Ruins of Copper Temple
3 Haryana Mujesar, Faridabad Kos Minar
4 Haryana Shahabad, Kurukshetra Kos Minar
5 Uttarakhand Dwarahat, Almora Kutumbari Temple
6 Delhi Delhi Bara Khamba Cemetery
7 Delhi Mubarakpur Kotla Inchla Wali Gumti
8 Madhya Pradesh Satna Rock Inscription
9 Maharashtra Pune Old European Tomb
10 Maharashtra Agarkot One Buruj
11 Rajasthan Nagar, Tonk Inscription in Fort
12 Rajasthan Baran 12th Centry Temple
13 Uttar Pradesh Ahugi Mirzapur Ruins of three small linga temple circle 1000 AD
14 Uttar Pradesh Chandauli Three sites with megaliths on the western and north eastern toes of the hill
15 Uttar Pradesh Varanasi Tablet on treasury building
16 Uttar Pradesh Varanasi Telia Nala Buddhist ruins
17 Uttar Pradesh Amavey, Ballia A Banyan grove containing traces of ancient building
18 Uttar Pradesh Katra Naka, Banda Closed Cemetery
19 Uttar Pradesh Mehroni, Lalitpur Gunner Burkill’s Tomb
20 Uttar Pradesh Lucknow-Faizabad Road, Lucknow Three Tomb
21 Uttar Pradesh Jahralia Road, Lucknow Cemeteries at miles 6 and 7
22 Uttar Pradesh Gaughat, Lucknow Cemetery
23 Uttar Pradesh Pali, Shahabad, Hardoi Large ruined site called Sandi-Khera
24 West Bengal Bamanpukur, Nadia Ruins of fort


Since many are not monitored or physically protected, many monuments have been dismantled or torn down, either as building material or to provide space in expanding towns and cities. The ASI has signed an agreement with the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) to use satellites to identify on maps prohibited and regulated areas to “facilitate procedure for grant of permissions for construction related activity within prohibited and regulated areas of all centrally protected monuments”, Sharma’s statement said.


As many as 3,686 such monuments are, or will be, monitored by ISRO.


The government has also added 17 sites nationwide for ASI protection, Sharma told the Lok Sabha in another reply.


These include the birth places of B R Ambedkar, regarded as the father of India’s Constitution; Madan Mohan Malviya, freedom fighter and educationist; and Dwarkanath Kotnis, an Indian physician whose life is celebrated in China for the assistance he rendered during the Sino-Japanese war of 1938. The other monuments cited for protection are largely Hindu and Buddhist temples.


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