‘AMASR Act’ of India in News

IAS Prelims 2023

The Ancient Monuments and Archaeological Sites and Remains Act (or AMASR Act) is an act of parliament of the government of India that provides for the preservation of ancient and historical monuments and archaeological sites and remains of national importance, for the regulation of archaeological excavations and for the protection of sculptures, carvings and other like objects. It was passed in 1958.

The Archaeological Survey of India functions under the provisions of this act.

The proposal for amendment of the Amasr Act, 2010 has been approved by the Cabinet and the pertaining Bill has been moved to Lok Sabha. The proposal is to allow public works or projects essential for public in prohibited area within 100 meter from protected monument but not having substantial impact on preservation, safety, security or access to the monument or its immediate surrounding including visual ambiance.

The proposal is aimed to harmonize the existing conflict between provision of sub-section (3) and sub-section (4) of Section 20A of the Act.

The draft amendment was published in the ASI website for inviting comments from the public. Concern from the public regarding indiscriminate constructions, vibrations due to construction, gradual erosion of sanctity of protected monument, and others have been received. The Government of India has assured that only public works, essential for public safety or security of public at large will be allowed, that too if no reasonable possibility of any other viable alternative for such construction beyond the limit of prohibited area is available.