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Indian Heritage & Culture

Golconda-Qutb Shahi Tombs

  • 20 May 2019
  • 6 min read

The National Monuments Authority (NMA) has given the go-ahead for the development of 54 row houses in the regulated zone of the 500-year-old Golconda Fort and Qutb Shahi Tombs Complex in Hyderabad (Telangana), with the caveat that colour scheme should match with that of the monuments.

  • Department of Heritage, Telangana, raised multiple concerns citing Ancient Monuments and Archaeological Sites and Remains (AMASR) Act against the issue of no-objection certificate to the builder.


  • There is a concern that the construction will block the visual continuity that has existed for centuries between the two locations.
  • The construction location is 101 metres beyond the wall near Patancheru Darwaza. The gate, in earlier times, used to be an important passage from the Inner Fort to the site of Old Golconda.
  • The construction may impact the history of 'Old Golconda'. It is believed that the site of Old Golconda might have extended to the area of potential new construction between the fort and the tombs.
  • It will impact the five small water bodies between the fort wall and the outer enclosure of tombs.
  • The construction will also impact efforts for securing the World Heritage Status for the sites (2014 nomination).

Government agencies and citizens need to work together to retain the heritage character of the two sites.

The Ancient Monuments and Archaeological Sites and Remains AMASR (Amendment and Validation) Act, 2010

  • The act that was passed in 2010 has the stated objective to preserve, conserve, protect and maintain all ancient monuments and archaeological sites and remains declared of national importance, and their surrounding areas up to a distance of 300 meters ( or more as may be specified in certain cases) in all directions.
  • No construction or reconstruction is permitted in the prohibited area (an area up to a distance of 100 meters in all directions from the nearest protected limit of nearby protected monument or protected area declared as of national importance), but repair or renovation is considered.
  • In the regulated area (an area up to a distance of 200 meters in all directions from the prohibited area of any protected monument and protected area declared as of national importance), repair/renovation/construction/reconstruction are considered.
  • All applications for construction related work in the prohibited and regulated areas are to be submitted to the Competent Authorities (CA) and then to NMA for consideration.

National Monuments Authority (NMA)

  • NMA under the Ministry of Culture has been setup as per the provisions of the Ancient Monuments and Archaeological Sites and Remains AMASR (Amendment and Validation) Act which was enacted in March,2010.
  • Several functions have been assigned to the NMA for the protection and preservation of monuments and sites through management of the prohibited and regulated areas around the centrally protected monuments.
  • NMA also considers grant of permissions to applicants for construction related activity in the prohibited and regulated areas.

Golconda Fort

  • It is located in the western part of Hyderabad city.
  • It was originally known as Mankal, and built on a hilltop in the year 1143.
  • It was originally a mud fort under the reign of Rajah of Warangal.
  • Later it was fortified between 14th and 17th centuries by the Bahmani Sultans and then by the Qutub Shahi dynasty. Golconda was the principal capital of the Qutub Shahi kings.
  • The inner fort contains ruins of palaces, mosques and a hilltop pavilion, which rises about 130 meters high and gives a bird’s eye view of other buildings.

Qutb Shahi Tombs

  • Lying two kilometers from the Golconda Fort, the Qutb Shahi Tombs are built in Persian, Hindu and Pathani styles of architecture.
  • The tombs were planned and built by numerous monarchs who ruled the state during the 18th century.
  • The grandeur of the tombs is ensconced amidst the beautiful and picturesque landscape and gardens of Ibrahim Bagh, and the tombs themselves are dedicated to the seven Qutub Shahi kings who ruled Golconda for nearly 170 years.
  • One of the most impressive tombs belongs to the founder of Hyderabad, Mohammed Quli Qutub Shah which rises to a height of 42 meters.
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