Telangana: Nizam era’s paintings of Ajanta Caves lay neglected

Hyderabad: The paintings of Ajanta Caves from Nizam’s era lay neglected with no attention given in maintaining their state in Ajanta Frescoes Gallery of the State Museum at Nampally.

Little did the last Nizam Mir Osman Ali Khan Bahadur hoped to see them in such precarious state when he started the project to record the Ajanta caves through photography and paintings.

Some of these paintings look as if someone had shot bullets at them with holes appearing in the paintings as well as the wooden frames of the 100-year-old remarkable paintings that recorded history.

A painting of a woman holding a mirror on her left hand, while two attendants hold a fly whisk and a tray of cosmetics is in the most precarious condition with vertical frames not covered by glass and at least three holes on its lower reaches.

Anuradha Reddy, Indian National Trust for Art and Cultural Heritage (INTACH) Convenor said these replicas have importance as many of its originals in the Ajanta Caves do not even exist anymore.

However, the State Museum’s Assistant director Ramulu Naik dismissed the painting’s serious state and said: “The damage happened while shipping. However, we are planning to restore it and we have already signed an MoU with a Mumbai-based museum for the same.”