Dismantling of the historical building of the school is temporarily suspended
Lado Bitchashvili, Shida Kartli
Elena Bayramova-Adamashvili is originally from the village of Small Mejvriskhevi in Gori municipality. Nowadays she lives in the capital. Upon request of the neighbors she started collection of the documents based on what the company started dismantling of the 9-grade public school building in her native village.
The history of the school building starts 140 years ago, when the Nobel Family of Chikoidzes opened a primary school in their house. Georgian Maecenas Davit Sarajishvili contributed to the functioning of the school; his sister was wife of the Chikoidze. Davit Sarajishvili’s sister opened the primary school in her house. Elene Bayramova-Adamashvili collected this information.
“Locals called me and said the building is demolished in pieces and the bricks are transported to Kakheti to furnish wine-cellar. Afterwards I requested the documentation and found out that the bid competition was announced for the deconstruction of the house and its price was 100 GEL. According to the competition requirements, the winner company could sell/use the construction materials. Even 100 bricks do not cost 100 GEL and it looked very suspicious. Moreover it is old Georgian brick, which is used to furnish hotels and wine-sellers. I started to study details and obtained conclusion of the Samkharauli National Forensic Bureau, which is very ambiguous – expert writes that the building is damaged but notes that it is possible to reconstruct-reinforce it. Thus, the deconstruction of the historical monument started without preliminary survey,” Elene Bayramova-Adamashvili said, who called on the law enforcement bodies to investigate the fact and study legality of the building deconstruction.
The school director Elene Khutsishvili said she learned about the participation of Davit Sarajishvili in the rehabilitation of the building and opening of the public school in it after the deconstruction of the building had already started. Regardless that, she does not see any signs of crime in the commenced dismantling of the building and states that all legal procedures were followed.
Elene Khutsishvili said it was dangerous to conduct educational process in the demolished building. Its deconstruction was inevitable. She mentioned the part of the conclusion from the Samkharauli National Bureau of Forensic Expertise, which states that it is more reasonable to deconstruct the building and build a new one due to real technical conditions of the building.
“I did not know that Davit Sarajishvili had some links with this school. However, I welcome if the historical monument will survive but the fact that it was dangerous to operate a school in that building that is proved by the expertise conclusion. When we decided to demolish the building, the Ministry of Education and Gori municipality administration were informed about it. We requested information from the National Agency for the Protection of the Cultural Heritage which notified that the building did not have status of the cultural heritage, we announced auction on its deconstruction. Genadi Imerlishvili won the bid. After negative reactions, the deconstruction is temporarily suspended,” Elene Khutsishvili said.
The application on the auction reads that the Gori municipality administration had endorsed deconstruction of the building on April 26, 2016. As humanrights.ge was told at the press-center of the Gori municipality administration, the permission is only formal document because the building is located in the territory of the municipality though it did not belong to the local self-government,
“If it was so dangerous to conduct schooling process in the building, the school had to move to another building to save the historical building from deconstruction. Moreover, there is unique wine-cellar with 20 pots [kvevri] in the basement of the building. We should take care of similar historical buildings and not destroy them,” Gabriel Iluridze from Patara Mejvriskhevi said.
Executive director of Human Rights Center Aleko Tskitishvili said there are many historical buildings in the country without the status of the cultural heritage. “There are many buildings – residential houses of the 19th century, whose owners are not aware of historical and cultural values of the buildings. So, they easily destroy them and sell bricks for nothing. However, they may get more income if they take care of the buildings and use them for tourist or educational purposes. The state shall implement the projects to identify and register similar buildings.”
Locals collected signatures to suspend deconstruction of the building. They say their protest had a result and deconstruction was temporarily halted.
Laura Terashvili, resident of Patara Mejvriskhevi: “I categorically demand to stop this barbarian act and take measures to maintain this treasure for the future generations of the village.”
The villagers believe the history shall not be ruined; the building shall have status of the cultural heritage and it shall be restored.
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