Home States Andhra/Telangana In all its glory: The Government City College painted red as part...

In all its glory: The Government City College painted red as part of conservation effort taken up by the Telangana government

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(G.N.S) Dt. 16
Hyderabad
Outer shell of the building being restored; work to be carried out in phases
The Government City College has been turned into a sparkling gem of Nizam-era heritage, thanks to a 1.83-crore conservation effort by the Telangana government. Painted a bright red interspersed with off-white bands on arches, jalis and medallions, the building once again radiates the charm of a bygone era.
Designed by British architect Vincent Esch in Indo-Saracenic style, an array of material ranging from locally-sourced dressed stones, reinforced concrete slabs to iron slats and black granite for flooring have been used. “Plastered with cured limestone and sand, the building is rock solid. However, there were leakages at many places. The plaster was flaking off in many areas. We have chipped that away and have applied a fresh coat of plaster,” said the contractor executing the project.
“The conservation effort is limited to the outer shell of the building. If the whole building has to be restored to its original form, the engineers have estimated that it would cost nearly ₹15 crore. We will do it in phases and restore the whole building to its former glory,” said C. Manjulatha, principal of the college that offers undergraduate and PG courses. “We are in a race to finish the first round of conservation as we have a NAAC Accreditation visit at the end of this month. We have allowed workers to stay on the premises so that the work gets finished quickly,” said Ms. Manjulatha.
The conservation effort began about four months ago and it led to many citizens worrying over the appearance of the building which had a uniform shade of dull white colour. “The faculty members and students came to me and said that they liked to see the building in the red colour they are used to. The monsoon also had me worried when there were water marks on the building. Then we decided to go back to the original red colour,” informed Ms. Manjulatha.
Plumbing in the building remains a key factor in the restoration effort. “The building is well planned and the drainage is still in a good shape except for the fact that it’s blocked at a few places due to rodents and refuse. There are four-feet wide channels for draining water. Our next target is to set that right,” said the contractor. The college that began as an Urdu school was built at a cost of ₹8,36,919. After being upgraded to a college, it emerged as one of the premier institutions in the Nizam’s Dominion and the alumni include luminaries like Marri Chenna Reddy, P. Shiv Shankar, Shivraj Patil besides a host of top sportspersons and academicians.

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