Shimla, May 17 (IANS) Himachal Pradesh Chief Minister Jai Ram Thakur on Thursday said that British-era Bantony Estate, a private castle in disuse for many decades, would be renovated at a cost of Rs 25 crore to be developed as a major tourist attraction.
The renovation will be as per its original Gothic architecture.
The castle, once the summer palace of the erstwhile Maharaja of Sirmaur, would house a museum, restaurant and recreational park.
Speaking at the inauguration of the five-day state-level ‘Gram Shilp Mela’ here, the Chief Minister said Bantony Castle would be developed in such a way as to showcase the rich cultural diversity of the hill state.
The castle is located on the Mall Road here.
Thakur said that the state held immense potential due to its cultural diversity and rich history and had historical buildings and monuments that could be developed for tourism.
The state has announced a new scheme ‘Aaj Purani Rahon Se’ for exploring folklores, historic events and cultural tourism in Himachal.
The government has also decided to introduce miniaturised cultural souvenirs such as musical instruments, Chamba ‘rumal’ and Kangra paintings.