Portions of the walls have chipped off and cracks are visible on some of the facades in Block-E, Connaught Place. The project to take the British era market back to its glory days has missed every deadline. HT Photo/Raj K Raj
A day after HT launched its ‘Save Connaught Place’ campaign, Delhi chief minister Sheila Dikshit said she had called a meeting with stakeholders on Monday to put the restoration project on the fast track.
Acknowledging that contractors had missed deadline after deadline, Dikshit said she was personally monitoring the work to ensure it is completed by December. However, she added, the recent rain could cause problems.
“I read the article in HT on Thursday and I’ve called a meeting of all stakeholders, including traders. I am not at all happy with the way the project has been moving. We are hoping the contractor will meet the December deadline,” she said.
A new problem is that blocks revamped in 2010 are already showing major defects — peeling paint, window panes not matching the original shape and size.
Experts say the rush to meet the deadline has resulted in shoddy craftsmanship. “It seems quality has been compromised upon,” said AK Jain, heritage expert and author of Lutyens’ Delhi.
Also, the contractor assigned the job of façade restoration left mid-way. A new contractor has been hired, sources said, but precious time has already been lost.
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