Journalists at Old Secretariat for the demolition works
Uma Sudhir on Twitter

They say a journalist's job is risky, but nobody really talks about how or why. The Telangana High Court on Monday had allowed the media to record the demolition of the Old Secretariat building in Hyderabad. The demolition of the building has been underway since July 6th.

This seemed like a fairly decent proposition until groups of journalists, reporters and cameramen arrived at the spot. That's when it was discovered there was no proper preparation for accommodating the journalists. This has led to media criticism of how the situation was handled.

Demolition of the Old Secretariat building in Hyderabad

The demolition of the old secretariat is the cusp of history that Telangana stands on as the Nizam heritage complex is razed to the ground in Hyderabad. The 10-block complex will be replaced by a new one. Demolition works on the building have been underway since 6th July 2020. 

On Monday, this week, the Telangana High Court had allowed the media to observe the demolition works at the site. Journalists arrived for business as usual. What awaited them was an experience that in the pandemic era will be one they will not forget in their careers for a long time.

Journalists at Old Secretariat for the demolition works
@Balakrishna096 on Twitter

What ensued was a fiasco where journalists were huddled on the back of trucks like cattle. Many took to social media to rue the incident and call out authorities for the lack of preparedness and precautions. From the images circulating online, the only precaution taken is the wearing of masks. 

Some likened the experience to a 'safari'. The HC had allowed media to be on the spot in the presence of senior officials, the idea was to enforce social distancing norms and journalists would be taken around in open-top vehicles. However, the situation didn't reflect what the court had intended.

Telangana Old Secretariat

The demolition work is said to cost around Rs 11 crore to the government in total. The construction of the new complex which will be a contemporary space no doubt with all modern amenities is said to cost Rs 400 crores. The inauguration is slated for second June 2021.