The National Thermal Power Corporation (NTPC), which is presently looking at developing and maintaining Hyderabad's iconic Charminar, has now 'adopted' the monument under the Centre's Swachh Iconic Places Projects of India.
The scheme is a drive under the central government's Swachh Bharat Mission, and the NTPC and the Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation (GHMC) on Friday signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on the issue.
A press release stated that D K Dubey, Regional Executive Director(South), NTPC and B. Janardhan Reddy, Commissioner, GHMC signed the MoU in the presence of Hyderabad Mayor Bonthu Rammohan, and the Standing Committee Members of the GHMC.
It was in November last year that it was decided that Charminar would developed and get a makeover as a Swachh Iconic Site (SIS).
Charminar has been picked as one among 100 such iconic sites, with each place being supported by public sector units for additional financing and other requirements.
As NTPC was selected, it decided to sanction Rs 8.19 crore to the GHMC in February this year, to develop the area.
In a press release, the GHMC had said that around Rs 2.5 crore would be spent on battery operated vehicles, while Rs 42.5 lakh would be spent on Swachh Auto Tippers for carting garbage.
While the GHMC planned to spend Rs 9 lakh for steel garbage bins, it said that sufficient lighting of the four historical arches around the Charminar would cost Rs 1 crore.
It also planned to utilise the money for construction of drinking water ATM kiosks, public toilets, and other amenities.
Presently, the Charminar Pedestrianisation Project (CPP), which aims to pedestrianise a radius of 220 metres around Charminar, by diverting vehicular traffic through the Inner Ring Road (IRR) and the Outer Ring Road (ORR), has picked up speed and is almost complete.
The Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) is also busy carrying out conservation and repair works on the monument and its pillars itself.
Charminar, which was built during Muhammad Quli Qutb Shah's rule in 1591, is a protected structure, as any construction within 200 meters around the monument can only be done after permission is obtained from the ASI and the National Monument Authority.