Restored King Edward Hall (Gandhi Hall), a legacy of Maharajah. Yeshwant Rao Holkar II

Historic Edward Hall (now Gandhi hall) , Indore

Gandhi (king Edward) hall,  Indore,

Gandhi/ Edward Hall, Indore

Above image:  Gandhi Hall (formerly King Edward hall), Indore, MP: Built in Indo -Saracenic style the Hall measuring 112 feet in length has a stage and gallery surrounded by an open verandah.
Rajput-style minarets topped with domes are typically native architectural features. The European style has Gothic elements  Palladian arches, a terraced roof and ornamental moldings. the other striking feature is the fascinating  90 foot tall clock tower, capped by a large 15x15 feet dome housing the clock itself. The clock dials are big and are quite visible at far of distance. The high ceiling in the arch is made of white plaster of Paris  with decorative features. A temple and a library are additional features of this building........  

Maharajah. Yeshwant Rao Holkar II

At a time when old colonial monuments are either left to rot or not given due attention by the state Archaeology departments, I am glad the  Indore Smart City Administration  in 2021 restored the famous King Edward Hall  along with the chiming clock in the prime area.  In order to preserve the heritage value special care was taken by the project engineers with respect to conservation work. The work that needs to be applauded is that of the chiming clock and the tower. The restoration work began only after the structure had been made structurally strong. 

Mahatma Gandhi Hall formerly known as King Edward Hall built in 1904 by Holkars  of Indore to honor the visit of  British Ruler King Edward during to  Indore State  was renamed as Gandhi Hall after India's independence. The builder was Maharajah Yeshwant Rao Holkar II (reign: 1926 - 1948) ho had a close rapport with the Crown administration.  The architect was Mr. Charles Frederick Stevens (he designed (Chatrapathi Shivaji Railway terminus, Municipal corporation building, etc.) from Mumbai and construction cost was  about ₹2,50,000. It was  inaugurated by the Prince of Wales (George V) in 1905. After the  assassination of Mahatma Gandhi in 1948, the hall was  renamed after Gandhiji.

King Edward (9 Nov 184 - 6 May 1910)

The red-colored building with magnificent domes and minarets  has an impressive medium tall clock tower with fine-looking clock dials.  The white stones from Seoni and red stones used in the building were procured from Patan, from mines in the present Madhya Pradesh (M. P.). The leftover construction material from the incomplete Phooti Kothi, also in Indore, was used to construct this hall. 

Architect Frederick William Stevens (11Nov.1847 -5 Mar. 1900)

After renovation the chiming clock shows correct time and helps thousands of passersby The historic grand  building of Holkar era still stands as  a  legacy of the British Raj.   

Set in an area of  4.245 acres including the 1200 square meters of hall with marble flooring, wooden stage area, unique painting and beautiful wooden ceiling, Gandhi hall building and the complex underwent complete renovation as part of  Indore smart city project   

Gandhi hall, Indore

palladian arches Gandhi hall, Indore

Gandhi/ Edward Hall, Indore

116 year old clock. Gandhi hall, Indore

Above images: Gandhi Hall Clock on the tower, Indore: The chiming 116 year old clock tower has been part of the life of the people living in this area.  Now restored after two decades, it chimes every 15 minutes. Earlier its chiming caused vibrations and it was considered unsafe as the building was  structurally weak due to poor upkeep. Credit goes to  83 year old watchmaker P.B. Lapalikar, who had earlier repaired the clock in 1956 and 2013  managed to repair the it with his sons in a short time. Chiming was restored in  July 2020 only after the tower was made safe by way of anchoring work......... 

Indo-Gothic Gandhi hall, Indore

Indo-Gothic  Gandhi/ Edward Hall, Indore

The renovation wok covered  repair of the sound of the chiming clock and certain  structural cracks in the clock tower. The clock became dysfunctional primarily because  of these cracks that caused seepage.  The restoration engineers were careful about renovation as the building is a masonry one  clad in  stone on the exterior on  both sides. They carefully handled the structural strengthening  work without compromising on its grandeur and beauty provided by the exterior cladding. The special patented technology of cintec anchor (UK)  gave them the right solution as it was used with high tensile strength stainless steel anchors embedded across the length and width of clock tower. They also successfully  handled  outward leaning and separation of northern and east walls at north east corner of the building. The conservationists carefully  used the cintec anchors tying both  walls to stop further separation; separation being due to long term deflection and movement. The most difficult part of conservation work undertaken by the  Indore smart city administration was strengthening the structure without damaging the decorative elements on the exterior. 

Gandhi/ Edward Hall, Indore

Located  close to the Indore railway and bus stand, the renovated aesthetically built Gandhi hall, along with open green cover  of over 14500 square meter area, parking, open-air theater, underground library building of 600 square meter and public plaza, has become    a popular venue for many cultural and  religious events, exhibition, etc., in the city.  The hall being a large one,  can  accommodate 2000 people at the same time and the added advantage is the open space around it which can be used for  bigger social events. The renovated colonial structure has not only given a fillip to the Socio-cultural life of this sprawling city but also  will stimulate  the heritage tourism of MP.   Restored to its original grandeur  in 2021,  to get the attention of the public the  State Government uses a new gimmick - lighting up this building in tri-color on all the three national festivals  highlighting  the splendor of this Indo-Saracenic styled structure, a legacy of Maharajah  Yeshwant Rao Holkar II, a dynamic ruler and administrator.