Patna: JDU MLC Ram Vachan Rai on Monday expressed concerns at the Legislative Council over various facilities being developed by the local administration at Patna’s Gandhi Maidan and said he feared the iconic ground would lose its essence.
Rai raised the issue through a call-attention motion in the pre-lunch session of the Council. Referring to the importance of the Maidan, which is spread over 62 acres and is known for hosting several historic political rallies and cultural events, Rai expressed concern over construction of a children’s park, gym and food court on the premises.
He said he had heard there were plans to construct shops in the periphery of the Maidan. “The openness of the Maidan is its beauty and by undertaking construction work in different parts of the Maidan, its original shape should not be tampered with,” Rai said.
Replying to his motion, urban development and housing minister Suresh Sharma said there was no proposal to construct shops in the periphery of the Maidan and hence there was no question of compromising its openness. Sharma, however, justified the government’s move to develop other facilities.
He said the park was meant for children, while the gym and the food court had been developed in the area between the pathway meant for walkers and the Maidan’s boundary wal. He said Patna Haat, too, had been developed in the same space so that local artisans could market their products.
Sharma said the food court and the Patna Haat were temporary structures, which could be removed as and when required. He, however, didn’t say anything about the gym.
His answer failed to satisfy Rai, who said one children’s park was located at a stone’s throw distance from the Maidan so he didn’t understand the logic of developing another park on the premises.
Rai also refused to agree with the minister’s logic that the space between the pathway and the boundary wall of had been used for developing other facilities as this space used to be littered.
The JDU MLC said the logic was not convincing because undertaking construction work at a space which the government could not keep clean could not be justified.
Courtesy: The Telegraph