Saturday, June 30, 2007

Decision to demolish BGMEA bldg in Hatirjheel...

Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers' and Exporters Association (BGMEA) Bhaban

HatirJheel wet land

West end of Hatirjheel wet land near 'Panthakunja'

Eskaton highrise overlooking Hatirjheel, wetland digging

Encroachment of wetland

Construction machines for Hilton hotel

Works on tower for fixing Hilton hotel bill board

Land filling for BTMA site on Begunbari canal

Begunbari canal and surrounding wet land

Begunbari canal near Rampura

Canal passing through Aftabnagar housing area

Filling of wet land on both sides narrowing the canal

Rangs Tower on Bijoy Sarani

LGRD and Cooperatives adviser Anwarul Iqbal said that the 15-storey Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers' and Exporters Association (BGMEA) Bhaban, built on a water retention area in Hatirjheel area that drains out water through Begunbari canal outside Central Dhaka, may be demolished as it did not have ‘Rajuk’ approval, also like the ’Rangs tower’s blocking Bijoy Sarani road.

In mid 80’s, Hatirjheel and Begunbari canal, which ran from the backside of the present Sonargaon Hotel to Gulshan, was thought to be designated as a flood-flow zone in the Dhaka Metropolitan Development Plan for development of a large planned water body with facilities of water sports, boating and promenade on sides. But, much of the wetland is now under occupation of several powerful agencies.

One acre of land in the canal towards the east of the Sonargaon Hotel was handed over to the Federation of Bangladesh Chamber of Commerce and Industry (FBCCI) at a token price and Sonargaon hotel has taken massive extension work in the south, narrowing the wetland. Apart from BGMEA Bhaban, Brac, Aarong, and other local land grabbers upto Gulshan, soon-to-be-built in Hatijheel area are the Hilton Hotel and BTMA building.

It is reported in local dailies that Rangs Bhaban was built during the Ershad regime. When BNP was in power from 1991-1996, it took an initiative to demolish the building, but failed. Awami League during its 1996-2001 regime also took an initiative to demolish the building but also failed.

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Vegetable Market - Karwan Bazar

Karwanbazar wholesale market

'Danta shak'- stem amaranth and 'misti kumra'

'Misti kumra' - sweet gourd/pumpkin


'Jali/Chalkumra' - wax gourd

'Mankachu'- giant taro

'Kanchkala'- plantain

Puishak - Ind. spinach green



"Misuk' loaded with veg

Bargain for trip

Karwan bazar rail crossing

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Image of Curzon Hall:

Plan and front view of Curzon Hall in 1904

Curzon hall after completion in 1908

Present view (front)

View from west

East wing

Domed terrace pavilions

This magnificent double-storied building in red bricks with a blend of continental and Mughal architecture ,with cusped arches and kiosk-like turrets, was built in 1904 as a Town Hall for the newly created province of East Bengal and Assam. A year later, Bengal was partitioned and Dhaka became the capital of the newly created province. The initiative and action of Lord Curzon, the then-Viceroy of India to divide Bengal into two states, led to fostering Muslim hopes of a permanent Muslim state that ultimately led to the formation of Bangladesh many years later. Lord Curzon laid the foundation of the building named after him on 14 February 1904. Since the new province had a majority Muslim population, the partition was welcomed by Muslims, but it was fiercely resented by Indian nationalist leaders. He was eventually forced out of office in 1905 but not before the building had started to take its shape. Curzon Hall was completed in 1908 but the partition of Bengal was annulled in 1911-12. Laid out in a spacious and carefully maintained garden in the heart of Ramna, this brick building has a large central hall, lateral wings on the east and west with several rooms, and a continuous verandah on all sides.

Some one impressed by its splendor once said:
“Where once did owl did hoot
The jackal yell,
In thickets dwarf and tall
There stands to-day, in state
A sentinel

The splendid Curzon Hall..”
It is learnt that the picture of Curzon Hall might feature in Bangladesh Currency note of Tk.1000.00 to be printed next.

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Roadside view: Livelihood

Money for the tiny snakes in the box - a way of earning a living

'Luchni' - kitchen articles

Footpath users

Birds for sale

Shahbagh intersection

'Amra' (hog-plum)

King size 'Amsatta' ( sweet pickled mango slice) and plum

Road side painters - create decorative pieces for anniversaries and wedding functions

Bamboos for construction works

Stilted shanties (bustee) in 'Hatir-jheel' area near Sonargaon hotel

Begunbari canal