Varanasi's heritage

A culture in danger

Print edition : December 07, 2018

A view of Varanasi from the bank of the Ganga. Photo: PTI

A Google image of the Kashi Vishwanath temple-Gyanvapi mosque area. The orange marks indicate buildings that have been demolished or are waiting to be demolished and the blue ones indicate temples that have been demolished.

The yellow area on the map indicates the corridor after completion of the project. Photo: Purnima S. Tripathi

Houses razed near Manikarnika Ghat. Photo: Purnima S. Tripathi

Vishwanath Gali reduced to rubble. Photo: Purnima S. Tripathi

Demolition in progress. Photo: Purnima S. Tripathi

A Shiv linga among the rubble.

Hammering away at a heritage building. Photo: Purnima S. Tripathi

Buildings, such as this one on Lalitha Ghat, will become history if the demolition continues. Photo: Purnima S. Tripathi

Idols in the open after the demoliton of a temple near Manikarnika Ghat. Photo: Purnima S. Tripathi

A Shiv linga exposed to the elements after the temple that housed it were demolished. Photo: Purnima S. Tripathi

Shiv lingas exposed to the elements after the temple that housed them were demolished.

Shiv lingas lying in the open after the temple that housed them was demolished. Photo: Purnima S. Tripathi

Residents of the Dalit basti near Manikarnika Ghat. Photo: Purnima S. Tripathi

Residents waiting in a half-broken house in a Dalit basti. Photo: Purnima S Tripathi

The gate that leads to Gyanvapi mosque. Photo: Purnima S. Tripathi

Idol (in the background) left in the open. Photo: Purnima S. Tripathi

Temples and heritage houses that dotted the lanes and bylanes of Varanasi have been levelled by the Uttar Pradesh administration in pursuit of its “beautification” project. This photoessay captures the situation on the ground.

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