The Telangana government has decided to convert a century-old orphanage to police headquarters.

Victoria Memorial Home or ‘Yateem Khana-e-Victoria’ at Saroornagar for over 115 years has served as a residential school for 600 orphans. Most of its inmates are girls.

The Telangana government now plans to acquire the sprawling premises of the orphanage and turn into the Rachakonda Police Commissioner’s headquarters. The property will be under home department for next 11 years.

 Though the order was issued on August 11t, it was not officially displayed in the website till Thursday. The commissionerate building requires 32,348 square yards and each square yard is leased for Rs 35000 per year.

The sixth Nizam of Hyderabad Mir Mahboob Ali Khan constructed the building and named it ‘Mahal-e-Saroornangar’ in 1903. It was renamed as Victoria Memorial Orphanage on the suggestion of Jawaharlal Nehru in 1953.

In 1994-95, the Home was converted to a residential institution and now has over 600 students, most of them girls.

The Home is now governed by an Executive Committee chaired by the Minister for SC Development with the Governor as the Chief Patron. The decision to accommodate Rachakonda Police Commissionerate here is disputed as it goes against the objectives of Nizam’s Endowment of gifting it only for educational purposes.

According to official sources, the proposal was opposed by all members yet actively pursued by Home Department under the stewardship of CM.

 Significant portions of Home’s land have already been leased out to Rythu Bazar, Babu Jagjeevanram Bhavan and Reliance fuel station. Ten acres was acquired for National Highway.

Many trials took place to develop VM Home as a model educational cum rehabilitation centre for orphan children on the lines of Hyderabad Public School. It was envisioned that VM Home will be turned into an Educational Hub by the then SC Gurukul Secretary Punam Malakondaiah.