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Zamindar College mosque’s original design compromised in reconstruction

Zamindar College mosque’s original design compromised in reconstruction

GUJRAT: While reconstructing the historic mosque of the Government Zamindar College, the administration of the institute changed its original architecture by reducing the number of its domes from six to three.

College Principal Prof Mumtaz Ahmed and other faculty members inaugurated the newly-built mosque on Wednesday. It was told on the occasion that Rs22.8 million had been spent on its reconstruction.

Late Nawab Sir Fazal Ali, the grandfather of PPP stalwart Nawabzada Ghazanfar Ali Gull and PML-N MNA Nawabzada Mazhar Ali, had launched the college back in 1930 under the aegis of Zamindar Educational Society and completed it in 1938.

Later, Sirdar Abdur Rab Nishtar, then governor of the West Pakistan, had laid the foundation stone of the mosque in 1950.

One of the six domes had collapsed during the repair and renovation work at the mosque around three years ago. Later, the entire structure of the mosque was demolished after it was declared “dangerous” by the authorities concerned.

The college administration, however, got the mosque rebuilt with the donations given by students, teachers and local philanthropists.

However, the Zamindar Educational Society raised objection to the change in design of the mosque and reduction in the number of domes but it was turned down by the college administration.

One of the faculty members told Dawn that the construction work had been started three years ago. About reduction in the number of domes, he said it was advised by technical experts of the buildings department for “their easy maintenance and renovation”.

On the orders of Sir Fazal Ali, the mosque was constructed following the architectural plan and design of the historic Badshahi Masjid of Lahore.

Nawabzada Ghazanfar Gull who now heads the Zamindar Educational Society said he was opposed to the reduction in number of the domes from six to three. He said a number of illegal structures had been built on the college premises after its nationalisation due to persistent negligence of successive provincial governments.

Published in Dawn, December 24th, 2015

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