Our Master students reclaimed the lost gem of Ahmedabad –The Manek Chowk Fountain on 14th February 2016

The students of the Centre for Heritage Management, Ahmedabad University proclaimed their love for the city of Ahmedabad on Valentine’s Day, and returned the lost gem of Manek Chowk to its people. A symbol of the city’s glorious past, Manek Chowk is an ornate fountain which was donated to the city by Rao Bahadur Ranchodlal Chotalal, pioneer of the city’s textile industry. It was lost in the course of time, and the city had comfortably forgotten its existence.

A one-day event in collaboration with Gujarat Institute of Civil Engineers and Architects (GICEA) and the students at Centre for Heritage Management worked together to install a replica of the original fountain at Manek Chowk Square. A partial remnant of the fountain in the Sanskar Kendra City Museum served as inspiration for the lost original.

The idea of reclaiming the lost fountain was given impetus by the passion and hard work of the students of the Masters programme. Aimed at creating awareness of the lost fountain as well as to revitalize the chowk an experience of the history and existence of the fountain was also recreated through an original play, “RANCHHOD RETIYO ANE ENO FUVARO” in the Bhavai form, a traditional kind of Gujarati theatre. The play, about Ranchhodlal Chhotalal’s life, was written by Dr. Chinu Modi and directed by Archan Trivedi.

The event was attended by Gautam Shah (Mayor of Ahmedabad), Pravin Patel (Standing Committee Chairman, AMC), Bijalben Patel (Chairperson of Recreation, Culture and Heritage Committee, AMC), Prakash Varmora (Varmora Group of Companies) and many other citizens of Ahmedabad. The Manek Chowk installation was a pre-launch event to the Ashapalli festival, organized by GECIA Habitat Conclave.

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