Srinagar’s Hari Niwas Palace to get major facelift soon

Srinagar: Hari Niwas, the grand palace built by Kashmir's last Dogra King, Maharaja Hari Singh, in Srinagar, will get a major facelift with the state government set to convert the property into a Centre for showcasing the rich cultural heritage of J&K.

Minister of Culture and Finance, Dr Haseeb Drabu, today cleared decks for handing over the prestigious palace to the Department of Culture which will refurbish it as the first of its kind Cultural Centre in the state.

The Minister said the Centre will house an art gallery, an amphitheatre, artefacts and archives on the history of Kashmir spaces for promotion of handicrafts, music and theatre which showcase the rich cultural heritage of the state. To make it a centre of attraction, the government will endeavour to bring some of the rarest artefacts on Kashmir lying in different parts of the state and outside under one roof," Dr Drabu, said.

Dr Drabu directed the officers to prepare a blueprint for development of the palace as a world class Cultural Centre by involving a panel of experts in the field of

Meanwhile, the Minister also directed the Culture Department to do away with the old methods and formulate a robust policy for procurement of books for libraries by purchasing reviewed and referred books from respected publishing houses; locally, nationally as well as internationally.

Dr Drabu said libraries are an important milestone in the cultural journey of any society and it is important to impart a degree of specialization in libraries by having a Library of Culture, Arts, Science, Social Science, etc.

Secretary Culture, Dilshad Khan, Director Libraries, Mukhtar-ul-Aziz, Director Archives, MS Zahid and Director Planning, Bilal Ahmad, besides other officers of Culture and Finance Departments attended the meeting. (PTK)

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