GUWAHATI, Sep 1 - City-based spiritual and charitable trust Shivani has decided to resist �tooth and nail� the move of the Life Insurance Corporation of India (LICI) authorities to demolish the 78-year-old Oriental Insurance Company Building on the insurance company�s Fancy Bazar MG Road compound in the city.
It has demanded that the building be preserved as a heritage building, and has also appealed to the Guwahati Metropolitan Development Authority (GMDA) and the Guwahati Municipal Corporation (GMC) not to grant permission to demolish the building and replace it with a new one.
In a letter to the Chairman of LICI, the trust said it viewed with grave concern the reported move to demolish the said building. The building had withstood the tests of time for over six decades and was connected with the history of the insurance industry in the NE region, said the trust.
The reported move of the LICI authorities had come at a time when the Government of Assam was giving special importance to preservation of old and heritage buildings to promote tourism. In pursuance to this policy, the State government had taken steps to preserve the Nabin Chandra Bordoloi Hall and the old buildings of Cotton College. The famous Chandrakanta Handique Hall owned by the Asam Sahitya Sabha at Jorhat is a unique example of preservation of the old and heritage buildings after renovation by the State government.
The trust has described the LICI authorities� move to demolish the Oriental Insurance Building to make room for a commercial complex, as an ill-coneived one.
It has cited the October 20, 2012 report of the Chennai e-paper edition of The Hindu, which stated that the heritage committee of the Chennai Metropolitan Area did not approve of the LICI authorities� proposal for demolition of the 115-year-old Bharat Insurance Building.
Moreover, there were other instances of preservation of old buildings built by the erstwhile Oriental Insurance Company in Mumbai and even in Myanmar, said the trust.
The trust has hence decided to resist tooth and nail the move to demolish the Oriental Insurance Building at Fancy Bazar MG Road area in Guwahati.
The trust has also sent copies of its decision on the issue to Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi and Lok Sabha member from Guwahati Bijoya Chakravorty.