Historical markets to regain prestine glory

  • | Saturday | 24th February, 2024

The historic colonial era market at Kashmere Gate in front of St. James Church, the iconic Kamla Market, in front of New Delhi Railway Station at Ajmeri Gate and ShraddhanandMarg cutting across the medieval Sadar Bazar, Naya Bazar and Khari Baoli areas up to Tis Hazari, will soon get a facelift and restored to their past glory. Delhi Lt Governor(LG)V K Saxena gave orders for restoration, beautification and refurbishment of these sites after visiting them on Thursday, officials said here on Friday. He visited the three locations, lying decrepit and crumbling due to years of neglect and apathy and instructed accompanying officials of concerned agencies and departments to take up the restoration of these with the local Market Trader Associations (MTAs). The market around St. James Church at Kashmere Gate, designed originally as a semi-circle with uniform façade of wrought iron jaali work, common covered passage and segregated shops of uniform dimensions, has been crumbling due to disrepair, encroachments and mindless construction. The LG noted that the neglect on part of civic agencies had been such that the entire historical complex had lost its original design and developed into a hazard bunch of shops.  Encroachment on the common passage of shops and parking was another issue that he flagged. He instructed for immediate repair of the crumbling structures, restoration of the original façade and find solutions to the parking problem in consultation with the shopkeepers and MTA. At Kamla Market, designed on lines of Gole Market and Connaught Place that was inaugurated by the countrys first President, Dr. Rajendra Prasad, the LG was faced with squalor, hanging wires, crumbling walls, unauthorized storage over rooftops, covered passage in disrepair and open urination.  This iconic market that should have been a delight for any passenger entering the city after de-boarding at New Delhi Railway Station, had turned into an eyesore, obstructed by encroachments. The Clock Tower atop the market had become non-functional laden with dust and grime.  Even the marble plaque commemorating its inauguration by President Rajendra Prasad was lying broken. Saxena directed for immediate cleaning, sanitation and restoration works. Travelling through the Shraddhanand Marg that runs from the New Delhi Railway Station to the Old Delhi Railway Station and further towards Tis Hazari and houses commercial hubs like Khari Baoli, Sadar Bazar and Naya Bazar, etc., the LG noted the lack of sanitation, disrepair of roads, encroachments of pavements and gross traffic mismanagement. This broad street, that could serve as an alternate boulevard between Old and New Delhi, and reduce time as well as distance substantially, needed a comprehensive redevelopment plan, the LG stressed.  He asked for cleanliness to be taken up immediately and a plan of action to be chalked out by concerned agencies in consultation with all stakeholders to decongest and facelift the entire stretch. 

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