By Tanaya Singh:
For the past one week, Sumedha Bharpilania wrote a series of articles talking about the dilapidated condition of Connaught Place, viewed from different angles, starting from a personal recount of attachment to CP, an introduction to the situations that have led to its current state, to interviews with people, some of whom have known the place for many years, and those who wish to see the it the way it was.
When I think of CP, I think of amazing circles. That’s how I remember the place. And the reason for this is that I was once fooled by an auto driver there. Not a great experience, but an experience nonetheless. He took us to a place which, we didn’t know, was just half a kilometre from where we started. “Chalo madam mai wo jagah janta hu”, he had said, and a tired person generally believes everything. So, we reached there by moving in long everlasting circles ending up to pay a lot extra money. I was new to the place and I felt like a real fool, but the circles amazed me. It was a fun revolving ride, and taking an eyeful of everything around was a treat.
Everybody in the country who has been to Connaught Place has a story related to it. Be it a birthday celebration, a shopping spree, a day spent reading in a coffee house, a pigeon view day, or just a stroll around; those who know the place remember it in all its grandeur.
We have all seen, and being seeing with dismay, how CP has been left unattended to, in spite of crores spent on the plan to restructure it. The work Began in May 2009, when the New Delhi Municipal Council (NDMC) decided to restore the glory of Connaught Place, which was in ruins. However, 3 years since then, all we know is that the ruin has only worsened. The real decrepitude began after the commonwealth games when the place was left in a real bad state by the contractors. Now, NDMC has said that work will be finished by December, this year, but seeing the present condition, and the humungous amount of work left, people have solid doubts.
As we have informed you earlier, Hindustan Times has taken a lead on this, to ask the Chief Minister to commit to a deadline and finish up work by that deadline. A petition has been compiled here, for this urgent need of restoration. We urge all citizens to sign it and save CP from turning into a forgotten fragment of the glorious history of Delhi.
If you have a story, a memory or a thought that comes first into your mind when you think of Connaught Place, I am sure you want it back to its original grandiosity. And if you don’t have one yet, you surely want to know the place, not the way it is now, but the way it was and should be. We urge all citizens to sign the petition and save CP from turning into a forgotten fragment of the glorious history of Delhi.