InterGlobe Foundation partnered with the Aga Khan Trust for Culture (AKTC) in 2014 to conserve and restore Abdur Rahim Khan-I-Khanan’s tomb, a monument owned and protected by the Archaeological Survey of India. This is one of the few conservation initiatives undertaken in collaboration with a corporate at any of India’s nationally protected monuments. The project broadly involved structural repairs and restoration of the monument as well as increasing public awareness about the life and works of Rahim – a poet, a secular thought leader, general, administrator and one of the key figures in the court of Akbar.
The physical revival included repairs to the major damaged structures on the interior and exterior of the mausoleum dalans, canopies (chattris), dome, façade and landscape, along with the wall and ceiling surfaces. The landscape around Rahim’s tomb has been restored to original slopes and height. The conservation of the dome has been completed with a symbolic addition of marble cladding.
After a detailed structural analysis, sequential work was initiated for the repair, stabilisation and reconstruction as per the original profiles, using traditional tools, techniques and materials. Careful cleaning of the principal tomb chamber revealed intricate incised plaster patterns, which were restored to their original glory. Conservation efforts were also taken to restore the original marble patterns on the dome, hand-carved on-site by stone craftsmen. All the patterns were consolidated and missing portions were recreated by master craftsmen using traditional tools, techniques and materials.
InterGlobe Foundation sees great value and potential in aligning its efforts on restoring tangible and intangible heritage and cultural resources of the society.
Part of the World Heritage Site encompassing the Humayun’s Tomb and other monuments, Rahim’s Tomb opened for public after 6 strenuous years of restoration efforts on 17th December 2020.