New law to protect heritage of Jaipur city is still a work in progress and Jaipur (Walled City) Heritage Conservation and Protection Regulations-2020 is yet to see the light of the day. Of course, now the obvious culprit is COVID-19 as most of state government’s resources and time are spent on fighting the pandemic.
Meanwhile, alterations by home owners have become rampant, especially after the Monsoon when most of the residents set themselves out to repair the damage caused by rains. In absence of guidance and knowledge, construction material is being used for repairs which compromises with the heritage value.
It may be recalled here that in July last year, Jaipur was named as World Heritage city by UNESCO.
UNESCO also expects the concerned state or entity, after getting its recognition, clearly bring out a law or rule regarding maintenance and restoration of heritage and prevention of threats to heritage. There should also be provision of material and other conditions for realisation of the cultural function of heritage, irrespective of its purpose. The law should also provide for public access to heritage and facilitation of the examination of and research into heritage. The law should be strict enough to prevent encroachment on heritage sites which would alter the properties, content, form and the value of heritage. The law should also fix the responsibility for the heritage protection system. The deadline to implement the bylaws is December 2020. According to officials, new law will be implemented soon.
The regulations drafted by the state government are an extension of the Municipal Council, Jaipur (building) By-Laws, 1970. However, the previous bylaws only covered the front elevation of buildings on outer roads and not the entire Walled City.
As per the draft, while G+2 houses will be allowed in internal lanes, G+3 construction can be done on outer roads which also means that once the regulations are implemented, residents who have illegally constructed their houses against the parameters will be issued notices. It would be mandatory to comply with the notice within 60 days.