Carlton House , Bengaluru - Does this colonial building escape from the ''wrecking ball'' in the future?

A perusal of countless monuments and historical sites across India would leave you  appalled  the way the monument laws are being broken or breached  and how poor attention is being paid to them by the government and the people . Particularly, with exceptions, politicians are least interested in the heritage and legacy of such historical sites and if need be, make decisions on the fate of the building without any referendum or proper consent from the public and historians to start a construction project. . If litications arise, caught in the middle are the vintage structures that rot on account of prolonged legal battle - stays or restraint orders from the courts.  Several years ago the famous Carlton House was caught in the middle of a spate of protests and objections from the public and at last the state government  decided to give up its claim on the venue of the  Constitution Club.

Carlton House, bengaluru,

Above  image: The historical Carlton House, Bengaluru has lots of trees in the open space  covering 7.5 acres of greenery around the building and some heritage lovers feel that the big campus  serves as a lung space  in the prime area where  air pollution and  particulates  pose threat to the people.Decades ago Bengaluru had a large green cover and we lost much of it because of city expansion and population growth along with alarming increase in vehicular traffic. The trees around the Carlton house must be saved.........

.Carlton House,

The Karkataka legislators in October 2016  were busy looking for a suitable site to house the proposed Constitution Club for legislators who needed  some kind of recreation to be away from the morass of political game, scams and whistle-blowing.  Even if they  were duty- bound and free from controversies, sometimes they fell into the trap of  internal turmoil or squabbles.  Obviously, they had  every reason to take refuge in the proposed Constitution club on the model of the one at Delhi. 

When they had Balabrooie Guest House on the palace road, on mind, there was widespread protest from the historians and heritage enthusiasts. In the wake of widespread condemnation,iIn the midway their proposal ended in fiasco.  

In  October 2015  the natas had set their eyes on the iconic Carlton House where  the State’s Criminal Investigation Department (CID) headquarters had been functioning.

A majority of legislators cutting across party lines  were of the view that there was no better alternative for the club to be built in the heart of the city. than Carlton.  So ,they eyed their option on the Carlton House, however former Home minister G. Parameshwara wrote  to the CM that the building should be retained for the CID,

Unperturbed,  a section of legislators and ministers visited the heritage site to make on the spot inspection about its suitability. In September 2016 the netas made renewed efforts to take over the Carlton House for the proposed club in a prime location in the city, on the lines of Bangalore Club, Bowring Club, Century Club and others where they will be from the din in the assembly house. They preferred this location to the 2.3 acre plot adjacent to the chief minister’s residence ‘Anugraha’ where Group D employees’ quarters is situated.

Building wrecking

The carlton house, Bangalore,

Above image:   Carlton House, a typical  European style  (Gothic revival style) building near Vidhana Sudha  several years ago became a center of controversy when in 2015 legislators wanted to have a constitution club built in that site.  Once owned by  the  British auctioneer Carlton in 1880, several well-known people like    the  Diwan of Mysore State Sir Mirza Ismail resided here.  After India's  Independence, Carlton sold the property to the state government. Once, the Bangalore University office  was housed here and presently, it is occupied by CID's (Criminal Investigation Department)  head quarters ................................

Some historians say that  nobody can pass judgement on the fate of  buildings more than 100 years old as legislators and ministers are vested with lots of power. Only a referendum which may be advisory, can solve such public issues.