Balasore, Sept 15 (LocalWire): A century-old heritage building built by the royal family of Nilgiri at Badapokhari village under Oupada block of the district is wallowing in neglect today.
Kishor Villa is in a dilapidated state due to the apathy of the revenue department and the state government.
Jayant Mardaraj, heir of the family, said, ‘I have corresponded with the government, the revenue department that has taken charge of the building as well as elected representatives but no avail.
It might cave in any day due to want of care and maintenance.’
‘When I was the honorary wildlife member, I had requested the revenue department to transfer the property to the forest department so that the building could be used as a forest rest house after renovating it,’ he quipped.
He said the structure was built in 1921 by then Maharaja Kishor Chandra Mardaraj (Jayant’s grandfather) to hear grievances of subjects as he used to hold camp courts once every month.
Since Nilgiri hill divides Nilgiri and Oupada, people used to travel long distances through Soro to meet the Maharaja.
To mitigate the plights and inconveniences of the people, the Maharaja built the camp court-cum rest house in Oupada.
‘He used to visit the place with his queen, other ministers and soldiers monthly once and used to stay for some days.
All facilities were taken care of in the building for a comfortable stay.
The building had a court hall, accommodation facility including kitchen and bathrooms. There were proper furniture and crockery too which perished due to neglect, Mardaraj said.
After Independence the independent princely state lost its identity after the merger with the Indian union. It lost its identity and all properties went to government of India.
‘The building was built in a place surrounded by jungles and hills. It had a serene environment.
I have been running from pillar to post to save the building but all I found is assurances with no substantial result as yet,’ he rued.