Before visiting Morena, I had a frightening image of the ravines of Chambal. Originally this image has been propagated by Indian cinema and the advice not to travel after sunset is passed as the standard antidote. This instruction was also taken full care of. But this journey provided me with a golden opportunity to get to know and feel the life that is bursting in the rugged terrain of Chambal. After discussing the past and present conditions with the local people, it was concluded that the difficult phase has passed and now the situation has become normal. However, the gun culture in the area is still alive today. People openly carry a gun with them. Due to government efforts, ravines have been made cultivable to a great extent, in which the growing crops are increasing the prosperity of the area. This visit not only cleared the misconceptions about the ravines but also introduced me to the beauty and grandeur of the great temples like Batesar, Mitavali, and Kakanamath. I am accompanied by Neeraj on this journey. In this part of the travelogue, we will visit the Batesar temple complex.Continue reading “Batesar Temple Complex: The Surprise of Chambal”
The Coronavirus pandemic and ensuing lockdowns, which began taking effect from early March at the global level have resulted in sudden disruption of transport and industrial activity along with almost whole of social and economic life. This has been done to contain the spread of the virus as well as gain time for ramping up coping strategies and mechanisms for health and economic hazards caused by the pandemic. The large scale curtailment of industrial activity has provided a window to record the effect of vehicular and industrial pollution on urban life. Dip in pollution levels has been reported from every part of the world implementing a lockdown. Some prominent names in the list of cities having witnessed a drastic decrease in pollution are from China, western Europe and Indian subcontinent.Continue reading “Pandemic and A Dip in Air Pollution”
Note: There are many instances where design appears to fail, where people through their use or behaviour subvert or reject design intentions, in the public realm that remains in plain sight and goes unnoticed by most of us in everyday life. This study revolves around and maps out instances where trees become the anchor point to interpret the correlation between the design intentions and behaviour of various users of public spaces. The study focused on the 3 km stretch from University Road to Navrangpura Gam in Ahmedabad.
Trees in the city play an important role, they are widely distributed from the middle of the road, on the pavement, in between the boundary walls. They are living landmarks that define space, contribute to air quality, and connect us to nature. Despite their ubiquity, most of us take trees for granted and know little of their civic virtues. The photo essay looks at the problems and possibilities of the trees in structuring the public realm of a street. In what way they are considered a liability by the designer while an opportunity, to inhabit, appropriate and exploit spaces they create, by the users in various ways. Continue reading “To Tree Or Not To Tree”
The beautiful Chandlai lake is located on urban-rural fringe of Jaipur. It appears to view after 1-2 km drive on taking right detour from Shivdaspura village on Jaipur-Tonk road. As one approaches the lake, there is a decline in temperature and increasing sensation of cold. In the haze of winter mornings the horizon looks lost beyond the Lake Island, which falls midway between the waters giving illusion of an endless sea. Looking at the lost horizon one feels like going out on a boar to explore and search it down. Continue reading “Chandlai Lake – An Urban Hope”
Encroachment? Walking through the Lal Kuan locality on Delhi-Faridabad border, one confronts the sharp line of division between natural, necessary and encroachment. The informal housing as well as new planned development is taking up spaces abandoned after closure of mining activities. People taking up the land are building to sustain their lives but are essentially developing by altering the natural terrain composed of Aravali hills. Such urban edges give a glimpse into challenges of walking the tight rope of urbanisation. #informal #housing #sustainable #development #encroachment #urban #urbanprecis #stone #expansion #village #India #urbanisation Photo – Manik Doomra (@manikdoomra)