Bhasha Bhavana, to be inaugurated by Prez, crosses prescribed height limits
Statesman News Services
Santiniketan, 5 December
President Pranab Mukherjee will on Saturday inaugurate a Visva-Bharati building that violates a long-standing tradition at Santiniketan.
The Bhasha Bhavana to be inaugurated by President Pranab Mukherjee crosses the height limit prescribed for buildings of Santiniketan.
Mr Mukherjee is schedule to arrive at Santiniketan on 6 December and will attend the convocation ceremony the next day. Before attending the convocation he is scheduled to inaugurate the Bhasha and Vidya Bhavana building at Dakshinpalli of Santiniketan.
Questions were raised over the construction of this building.
The height of the building is 14 metres and it is a four-storey building. According to existing norms at Visva-Bharati, the height of any building inside Santiniketan should not cross 8.5 metre. There shouldn’t be any building above the two-storey height limit. The rule is mandatory for the core ashram area and in the surrounding area of 500 metre radius.
Before this building came up the only high rise at Santiniketan was the Udayan house of Tagore. That is a two-storey house. There was a tradition at Santiniketan that there should not be any building above Udayan House. But the Bhasha and Vidya Bhavana building have crossed that height limit.
“We are not habituated to see high rises in Santiniketan locality. The building looks odd in this area. We are not permitted to build houses more than 8.5 metre in height. How Visva-Bharati can build such building is a big question,” said Ms Urmila Gangopadhyay, an ashramite of Santiniketan.
According to the rules of Sriniketan Santiniketan Development Authority height limit of buildings also should be below 8.5 metre. Inside the Visva-Bharati campus, for any confusion regarding height Visva-Bharati authorities should be consulted.
However, the university authorities claim that when the building was sanctioned there was no written rule.
Before the rule was made people of Santiniketan and Visva-Bharati authorities used to maintain the tradition of not crossing the height of Udayana. So for the long time the tradition and harmony was maintained.
When several multi-storeyed buildings started coming up, the Visva-Bharati authorities made the rules mandatory.