Middle East

The British Patna DM office building depicted in “Gandhi” was destroyed

Patna: The historic British-era Justice of the Peace office building, part of a centuries-old collector’s campus, featured in an important scene in the Academy Award-winning movie Gandhi, has been demolished and heritage enthusiasts. And sent a wave of sorrow among the Gandhi people.

A few days ago, the bulldozer grabbed the elegant two-story main Patna collector’s building on the banks of the Ganges and reduced it to a skeletal state.

The building collapsed as part of a redevelopment project by the Bihar state government.

On Wednesday, workers carried away bricks from a pile of rubble that had piled up next to the wreckage of an old building that was once home to the district administration and is said to have been built in the early 20th century.

The building was also adorned with a gorgeous iron spiral staircase attached to the western façade.

City heritage enthusiasts have previously told authorities to rescue historic crafts such as old safes, clocks and furniture, suspended skylights, spiral staircases, vintage steam rollers, and very old printing presses as buildings. I was complaining. It was announced that the collector campus will be dismantled in stages.

“The demolition began on the same day (June 24th). The Ganges drive was launched and I heard the bulldozer growl knocking it down at midnight. It was a powerful building of the British era. “On condition of anonymity, a local resident living near the collector ghat said.

On Friday, Bihar’s Prime Minister Nitish Kumar publicly dedicated the first phase of the 3,831 rupee highway along the Ganges, the JP Ganga Pass. This is called “Patna’s Marine Drive”.

The 20 km elevated road passes in front of the Collectorate Ghat, eventually connecting Digha and Didarganj.

On May 13, this year, the Supreme Court dismissed the plea by INTACH, a heritage group that has been in court struggle since 2019 to save the landmark from being demolished, paving the way for the destruction of the Patna Collector Complex. ..

Demolition began the next day, and the district committee Patna Building, built in 1938, was the first building to be hit by a bulldozer.

With ancient-looking Pilaster Corinthian columns in an iconic conference hall, the building resembles a centuries-old land expropriation office building in a vast 12-acre complex on May 17th. Was removed by.

The Dutch-era record room building, which had high ceilings, large doors, and a very old and unique skylight on the roof, was also destroyed on May 17. As a record room office, only a small part of the frontage has been left so far. Still occupies it.

Gandhi, an Academy Award-winning film, includes the best photos and the best directors, taking the record room building as a Motihari prison, and the DM office building to film MK Gandhi’s famous Champaran trial. Disguised as a court of.

Since the demolition began last month on the historic Patna Collector campus, several historians, scholars, nature maintenance architects, Gandhi people, and the general public have expressed distress.

GM Capule, a veteran heritage activist based in Kolkata and a member of the INATCH board, lamented “the collapse of the Patna collector’s landmark, every brick.”

“As a nation and as a conscientious society, we must respect our history and heritage, otherwise history does not respect us. Patna’s historic DM office building It’s sad that it’s gone. The building was sturdy and beautiful, and a delicate plan could have been incorporated into the redevelopment plan, “he said.

The current dismantling move on the Collector Campus is for the Bihar government to dismantle three five-star hotels in the capital of Bihar, including one on the grounds of the 100-year-old Sultan Palace in the heart of Patna. It will take place a few days after the plan is announced. Its old structure has triggered public protests.

Ironically, both Patna collectors and Sultanate Palace are mentioned as cultural sites on the official website of the Bihar Tourism Board.

“In 2008, Collectorate was listed as a heritage building by the Bihar state government. The high style of Dutch and British architecture can be seen in the construction of collector buildings,” a photo of the DM office building was also posted. I’m reading the collector’s section of my website.

Both Patna collectors and Sultan Palace are also listed as heritage buildings in the 2008 Bihar Government publication Patna: Monumental History.

In 2016, the provincial government proposed dismantling the old Patna meetinghouse as a new high-rise complex, gathering criticisms and complaints from various locations, including the Dutch envoy of India at the time and the Gandhi Foundation based in London. rice field.

Last year, Gandhi Sanglaraya’s secretary, Raj Ahmad, in Patna, Gandhi Jayanti, celebrated this historic landmark as a heritage instead of celebrating it in the name of development by the Bihar state government. He lamented that he had proposed to dismantle.

Ahmad, who once saw Gandhi’s shooting on the ringside, acknowledged and respected the crowd on the ground where “Gandhi” played by actor Ben Kingsley came out of court and shouted “Gandhi, Gandhi” in the hallway. Represented.

https://www.siasat.com/british-era-patna-dm-office-building-shown-in-gandhi-razed-2359886/ The British Patna DM office building depicted in “Gandhi” was destroyed

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