Saturday, August 14, 2010

43. Take it from a halwai

Carrying a roll of colorful charts, a frail looking gentleman had walked uninvited to the workshop we were conducting for budding environment journalists. The charts had plans of an alternate future where everyone would live 30 feet above ground, perched atop buildings resting on mighty pillars.The land beneath will stay clear for urban agriculture and for myriad other human activities.

The sun would shine uninterrupted and the air will flow freely; neither will earthquakes shatter homes nor will floods play havoc with properties. Producing a series of charts, the gentleman had meticulously argued the virtues of an elevated living, That he was cause for flutter didn't bother him a bit! It was later learnt that the presenter, Nand Lal Gupta, was a halwai (one who makes sweets) by profession who owned Gokul Misthan in Arera Colony, Bhopal.

Gupta had made this proposition in mid-1990's, when the idea of elevated road was uncommon and metro rail on pillars wasn't part of popular imagination. That `life atop pillars' would be a reality could not have been imagined then! Now that urban expansion has altered the drainage pattern in most towns and cities (few millimetres of rain can submerge the entire city) the virtue of living 30 feet above ground doesn't seem utopian.

My only regret till date is that Gupta could have treated us with jalebi for our patient hearing to his futuristic proposal!

4 comments:

靜錢錢錢怡錢錢錢錢 said...

好的部落格就要和好朋友分享--感謝分享..................................................

ravi said...

This plan is probably not very good for urban areas that are already built up. It would be simpler to lay sewage pipes 30 feet under ground rather than shift existing buildings 30 feet up. But this might be a good solution for areas that are flooded annually. At least one cluster of government buildings like school, health centre, and maybe some other office could be built on pillars. Then this area could serve as emergency shelter, and the school could provide accomodation to visiting journalists and relief workers. the roof could be a helipad for when the chief minister does a "hawaai survey"

玉韓韓韓婷韓韓韓韓 said...

It is no use crying over spilt milk.......................................................................

Vijay Rai said...

The coverage of Gupta ji the Jalebi maker by Sudhir the uncoile of Jalebi was an interesting read.

AS a solution, Gupta ji is right and he foresaw what we are doing today. When the roads are encroached we build flyovers, when cars can not move on road we switch over to metro so when we can't manage rains and drains, we should logically raise our houses.

But the survey should not be 'Hawaii' but by a 'Halwaii' who could think of the future much clearer than our civic bodies.