Traders protest against proposed reconstruction of Devaraja Market

Urge authorities not to demolish Lansdowne bldg, century-old market

 Devaraja Market was closed for half-a-day to protest against the proposed reconstruction of the century-old building as a portion of it had collapsed last year. People, who visited the market, were in for a shock as the market was closed.

More than 300 activists, under the banner of ‘Nagareeka Hakku Rakshana Samiti,’ took out a procession from the Dufferin Clock to the DC’s office, via Devaraja Urs Road and JLB Road. They staged a protest, urging the authorities not to demolish the Devaraja Market and Lansdowne Building, two important heritage strictures in the city. At least, 700 of 930 shops in the market were closed from 10.30 am to 1.30 pm.

The protesters said, Devaraja Market building could be reinforced as only a part of the northern portion has collapsed on August 28, 2016, while the rest of the building has remained intact. They alleged that the officials and the elected representatives at the Mysuru City Corporation have connived with contractors to demolish the iconic Lansdowne Building and also the Devaraja Market building with an eye on the funds that would be released for both demolition and for construction of the new buildings. Lansdowne building had collapsed in 2012, causing the death of four persons.

Besides being the lifeline for around 20,000 families, the market is also a tourist destination. The indiscriminate use of heavy machinery for renovation works on the building might have caused the collapse. Action should be taken against the contractor, who had been executing the renovation works, after conducting a thorough investigation, they said.

Samithi state unit president Govindaraju, vice president G Tara, general secretary Krishnamurthy, Mohan Kumar and Dyavappa Naik among others led the protest.

The Devaraja Market was built by the Wadiyar kings on the plot where a small weekly market was being held since time immemorial.

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