Today in New Delhi, India
Dec 12, 2018-Wednesday
New Delhi
  • Humidity
  • Wind

Delhiwale: A ruin in the land of glitz

In the heart of the Millennium City, the ruins of a collapsed house stand as the souvenir of a time long gone.

delhi Updated: Aug 09, 2018 13:09 IST
Mayank Austen Soofi
Mayank Austen Soofi
Hindustan Times
delhiwale,gurugram,sadar bazar in gurugram
The ruins of a haveli in Gurugram’s Sadar Bazar. (HT Photo )

There is a staircase going up to the roof. Or perhaps to a room that has collapsed and no longer exists. And there are niches too, the kind seen in ageing havelis.

The house is made of lakhori bricks, the building material of yesteryears.

This ruin is in Gurugram, standing like the last of the old souvenirs in a youthful land of new opportunities.

“This haveli is more than a hundred years old,” gushes an apple seller, his cart parked right in front of the decrepit edifice. It’s abandoned, obviously. Nobody can live in it, here in Sadar Bazar, just opposite a popular jalebi shop.

An all-knowing shopkeeper talks in a low voice of property disputes concerning the building, but who cares? Just look at the dilapidated structure and marvel that it survives in a city where eyes struggle to spot anything older than your grandparents.

Once, this damaged edifice must have witnessed all the casual household joys and hardships. Today, the roof is gone and portions of its walls are missing. The residence lies exposed to the world, soaked in melancholy, specially on this rainy afternoon.

The bazar commerce is going about the building, and no one is caring to find a moment to gaze upon its haunting beauty. Rolls of blue canvass, metal plaques, discarded tables and other sorts of bazar junk have been flung against its remains.

The only one that seems to be possessive about the building is a giant Neem. Its sprawling branches are reaching out like the arms of a longtime lover.

The house would stand apart even among the historic mansions of, say, Old Delhi, but in our futuristic city it looks as if the mansion has been air-dropped from a helicopter. It cannot carry on for ever. One day, the house will be replaced by a more modern building and this home will be forgotten as if it never was.

First Published: Aug 09, 2018 13:08 IST