A Photo-Walk in BBD Bagh (Dalhousie) on a Sunday
29 Sep ’16
Have you ever taken a walk through the heart of Central Kolkata on a Sunday? On the weekdays it’s packed with people, sounds and a hundred different smells. But on a Sunday, a day when all government and private offices are closed, BBD Bagh completely transforms from a hub of activity to a lazy idyllic place. You can roam up these couple of centuries old streets, ogle at the architecture without fear of someone walking straight into you. You can take your own sweet time and frame the photos just the way you want. I went on a stroll on such a Sunday during the month of April back in 2011.
BBD Bagh, formerly known as Dalhousie (after a shitty British guy) is the nerve centre of Kolkata. All of the important state government institutions are located here including the seat of the state government at the Writer’s Building. The photo at the top depicts the buildings opposite the Raj Bhavan.
The entrance to the Raj Bhavan. I would love to check out that cannon from up close. According to my research, it’s a Chinese cannon in the form of a dragon captured from Nanking and brought over to Kolkata in 1842. Supposedly the plaque underneath the cannon says “The peace dictated to the Emperor of China under the walls of Nanking by the military force of England and of India.” The British almost make it sound as if we were allies!
Both of the above two buildings once housed the stables along with serving as the residence of the master of stables. Now they are surrounded by more modern buildings which decidedly worse architecture.
An even wider panorama depicting the western corner of the Writer’s Building along with the RBI (Reserve Bank of India) building. The contrast couldn’t have been any more; the Greco-Roman architecture of the Writer’s and the Brutalist/Soviet architecture of the RBI building.