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Delhi’s pride, now in a mess

Young Delhi joins HT’s campaign to save Connaught Place and give it back its cool tag.

entertainment Updated: Sep 08, 2012 00:44 IST

One of the most famous landmarks of Delhi, Connaught Place (CP),which is widely regarded as the pride of the city, has now become a nightmare for many. The ongoing construction, as well as the dug up and blocked roads has resulted in CP losing its charm. Shopkeepers and popular eateries in the area are losing out on customers and are running into losses, with youngsters no longer preferring to hangout with their friends here.

As one walks around CP, the sight of men distributing pamphlets for promoting popular eateries and pubs in the area has become a common sight. These businesses are running low because of the ongoing construction. “For the past two years, our business is just suffering losses. The entrance to middle circle is closed. Only regular visitors take the pain of coming here these days. Our average earning used to be around Rs 1 lakh a day, but now it’s just Rs 15,000 to Rs 20,000 per day. Everybody knows and visits the inner and outer circle, but it is the middle circle that’s really suffering. It is a major problem for us,” says Ajay Dogra,assistant manager, The Chinese.

“There is no parking, there is dust all around and the atmosphere is so bad that I avoid coming here at all costs unless I need to go to a specific shop here,” says Anuradha Kaul, 21, a student.

Even the street side vendors are not doing well. “The sale is down. Not many customers come here, as it’s dirty all around,” says Sunny, a vendor selling junk jewellery in front of Dominos in N block. “I have been selling books here for the past 22 years, but the last two years have been a nightmare. Sale has become less than 50%, as people don’t want to come here anymore because of the construction work,” says Pradip Jain, a bookseller in the corridor of N Block.