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Kapoor Haveli in Peshawar faces demolition threat

Muhammad UsmanMultimedia Journalist

14th Jul, 2020. 09:14 pm
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Late Bollywood actor Rishi Kapoor ‘s historic ancestral home in Pakistan’s Peshawar city faces demolition threat as the house’s current owner is steadfast in building a commercial complex on the site worthy of crores.

In 2018, the Pakistani government agreed to turn the “Kapoor Haveli” in Qissa Khwani Bazar in Peshawar into a museum, following a plea by Rishi Kapoor who recently died at a Mumbai hospital.

Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi had told Rishi Kapoor that the Government of Pakistan would turn the house of the actor into a museum.

The haveli has transformed into a ghost building, said, area residents.

The building can collapse at any time, they said, owing to its dilapidated condition.

With each passing day, the condition of the building deteriorates due to ecological effects, torrential rains, earthquakes, and wind storms.

Haji Muhammad Israr, a wealthy jeweler in the area, currently owns the haveli.

The provincial government wanted to buy the haveli in view of its historical significance and preserve it for the tourists in its original form.

However, Israr wants to demolish the building and build a new commercial building in that prime location.

He made three / four attempts in the past to demolish the building but was unable to do so as the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa heritage department registered FIRs against him.

Israr, the haveli’s owner, denied that he had any issue with the government over the property ‘s valuation, estimated to exceed Rs 5 crore.

He said he only wanted to demolish the haveli on the site and create a massive commercial market.

“I have sufficient money to cater to my needs. I supply around 3 to 4 maund (120kg-160kg) gold a week to Peshawar’s biggest jewelry market,” said Israr.

The Kapoor family, originally from Peshawar in Pakistan, migrated to India after the partition in 1947.

In 1990, Rishi Kapoor along with brother Randhir Kapoor visited their ancestral home where his grandfather, Prithviraj, and his father Raj Kapoor, were born.

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