Kodagu DC’s offices to be shifted out of Madikeri Palace
In a welcome move, the authorities have finally decided to shift the offices of the Kodagu Deputy Commissioner from the premises of the Madikeri Palace, a historic monument.
The Kodagu district administration has made up its mind to shift the Deputy Commissioner’s offices to the Central Workshop building.
The relocation of the Deputy Commissioner’s office was long overdue because the Madikeri Palace built in 1814 by Lingarajendra Wodeyar II comes under the jurisdiction of the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI). The Palace was in a state of neglect because the ASI was not in a position to take up the conservation of the structure as it housed the Deputy Commissioner’s offices.
Though the government had earlier planned to build the Deputy Commissioner’s offices at Karawale Badaga near the golf course on the outskirts of Madikeri, the location did not have many takers because of the distance from the city centre.
The defunct Central Workshop building had been lying idle and the government decided to take over 2.20 acres of land for the construction of the offices.
The district administration has put up a proposal for a new office complex at an estimated cost of Rs 6.7 crore. The administration was already in possession of Rs. 3.15 crore released by the Government to construct the complex at Karawale Badaga village.
Although the land was in the possession of the Central Workshop for 44 years, there were no records to prove that it belongs to the Workshop. Hence, the Kodagu administration concluded that the land belonged to the Government.
The brick and mortar Madikeri Palace is located inside the Fort. The two-storied structure is 110 feet long. The British renovated the structure twice and in 1933 added a clock tower and portico to park the Commissioner’s car.
The Coorg State Assembly during 1952-56 functioned in the premises of the Madikeri Palace. The premises is in a state of neglect as the state government has hardly released any funds for its upkeep, in keeping with the lackadaisical attitude of successive governments in Karnataka towards Kodagu.