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Calcutta Weather
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Rs 20cr revamp for high court

Renovation of the Calcutta High Court building set up in 1872 will start soon, with the Centre releasing Rs 20 crore for the project.

“We have recently received the central grant of Rs 20 crore. Renovation work will start soon,” state law minister Rabilal Moitra said.

The overhaul will coincide with preparations for the 150th anniversary celebrations of the high court, to be held in 2012.

The court has two other buildings apart from the one set up in 1872, the latest yet to be unveiled.

“The northern side of the old building has tilted slightly. The civic authorities have declared the part condemned but it still houses courtrooms,” said an official.

A public works department engineer engaged in the upkeep of the heritage structure said the condemned part would be refurbished by erecting a few concrete pillars on the ground and first floors.

The Calcutta High Court website states this is the oldest high court in India, set up on July 1, 1862, under the High Court Act, 1861.

It’s jurisdiction includes the whole of West Bengal and the Union Territory of the Andaman and Nicobar Islands.

The old building, modelled on Cloth Hall at Ypres in Belgium, was designed by Walter Granville, the then government architect.

“The Centre has allocated Rs 20 crore but more money is required for proper renovation of the building. We hope the Centre and the state government will join hands to make the high court more beautiful,” said S.S. Roy, the vice-president of Calcutta High Court Bar Association.

The law department has also started repairs of the Alipore Judges Court building.

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