How they are ruining my beloved Gandhi Bazaar

ARUN PADAKI writes from Bangalore: The pleasure of shopping on Gandhi Bazaar Main Road in Basavanagudi may be lost forever, as an underpass at Tagore Circle will be in place by the Bruhat Bangalore Mahanagara Palike (BBMP).

The ill-conceived and irrelevant underpass would not only consume the lush Tagore Park, but would render this pride of South Bangalore tree less.

An underpass at Tagore Park is nothing but a disaster on the residents of Basavanagudi.

This would end an era, in which Gandhi Bazaar has become a way of life. The historic Tagore Park would be gone forever and the tree lined Gandhi Bazaar Main Road would end up as a main arterial road connecting other localities, and in the process pushing the shoppers and vendors away.

Can one imagine the loss of shopping here on the eve of Gowri Habba, Ugadi or Deepavali?

BBMP has built a flyover at the National College Circle, just few hundred meters away from the proposed underpass that remains underutilized for more than two years.

Bangalore’s ethnicity and tradition is best seen at Basavanagudi.  Instead of turning this into a concrete mess, Gandhi Bazaar should be converted into a cultural hotspot, a shopper’s delight and a walker’s loved place.

Let every day be Deepavali, let every day be Gowri Habba, let every day be Ugadi.

Tagore Park with its elevated podium could be a place where cultural programmes could be performed, while the audiences could have multiple options to sit, squat or stand with their friends and family.

While the people here are rather quiet about this apart from talking to the press, not much action is seen to thwart this irrelevant project.

The elected representatives who opposed this not too long ago are not to be heard this time, indicating that they have either supported this underpass quietly or their efforts to stall this project has been disregarded by their own ruling party and their Member of Parliament, Ananth Kumar.

Be it the Congress or the BJP, there seems to be no difference. It is clear that their fad for flyovers is ruining Bangalore in general, and Basavanagudi and V.V. Puram in particular. People are now aware that their views hold no water and hopefully are wise enough to choose a better representative in the ensuing BBMP polls.