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Located right in the middle of India’s capital city, Connaught Place is perhaps one of the most popular landmarks of the country. It is visited by more than five lakh visitors daily. It is therefore not surprising that the news of Connaught Place trying out a three-month pilot to go vehicle-free made it to the headlines. Come February, New Delhi’s Connaught Place will see a ban on buses and cars for three months as part of the Smart City project. The move is being implemented by the union urban development in partnership with the New Delhi Municipal Council and Delhi Traffic Police. The three-month pilot is aimed at studying traffic flow, parking issues and experiences of pedestrians and shop owners. The larger motive is to make the arrangement permanent based on the feedback received during these three months. (ALSO SEE 13 stunning photographs of Delhi like youve never seen before!) Also Read - Terrifying Videos of Locust Attack Take Over Twitter; 'What's Wrong With You 2020', Ask Netizens
During these three months, people will be required to park their vehicles outside the pedestrian-only zone. However, there will be free park and ride services from major parking areas at Shivaji Stadium, Baba Kharak Singh Marg and Palika parking. According to the Police, an average of 1,088 vehicles are parked in the zones that have the capacity to hold 3,172 cars. Now, battery operated vehicles will be employed for people to travel from the parking areas to Connaught Place. The decision that was taken during a meet chaired by Union Minister of Urban Development M Venkaiah Naidu and attended by the New Delhi Municipal Council (NDMC) and the Delhi Police, met with resistance and opposition from traders in the commercial area. They argues this move will affect their business it would result in traffic jams in the Outer Circle all the way to Mandi House instead of easing the congestion. CHECK OUT 5 places in Delhi to hang out with friends Also Read - Amid Tensions With China, PM Speaks to Bangladesh's Sheikh Hasina And UAE's Bin Zayed
The pedestrian-only concept is actually quite popular abroad and is considered as an effective way of keeping vehicular traffic and pollution in check. Famous global landmarks like Camden Street in London, Boulevard Saint Laurent in Montreal, Canada, and central district of the Danish capital of Copenhagen, all have pedestrian-only zones. In India, The Promenade in Puducherry which is known for its French quarters has a ban on motorized vehicles after 5 pm. How effective this move turns out to be for Connaught Palce remains to be seen! As for travelers, there will still be loads to do at Connaught Place regardless of the vehicular ban. You can conveniently get to the hep and happening spots of CP onboard the battery-operated vehicles. Here are the top five attractions in Connaught Place you must not miss!
New Delhi’s Jantar Mantar may not be as popular as it Jaipur counterpart. Nevertheless, it is a marvelous piece of architecture worth a visit for all history buffs. Unhappy with the tiny instruments used for measurements, Maharaja Jai Singh II of Jaipur, set up Janar Mantars at five sites in order to keep track of calendars and dates. Back then, it was only possible to make these measurements by tracking the movements of the sun, moon and planets. The Jantar Mantar at Delhi houses fine speciments of the brilliant architecture of these instruments and takes you back to a time when brains were sharper than swords. DON’T MISS 8 historical sites in Delhi that will take you back in time
Popular with pilgrims, the Hanuman Temple in Connaught Place is an ancient Hindu temple with a statue of Bala Hanuman (Hanuman as a kid). It is claimed to be one of the five temples that have have been in Delhi since the days of the epic Mahabharata days. It has historical significance and is considered to be one of the unique self manifests of Hanuman. The unusual feature of this idol fixed in the spire (vimana) in the form of a crescent moon which is an Islamic symbol instead of the Hindu symbol of Aum or Sun typically found in Hindu temples made this temple extremely popular and significant during the Mughal era. Today, the temple continues to attract a number of locals and tourists alike. This temple also features in the Guinness Book of World Records for a 24-hour non-stop chanting of the popular Hindu mantra Sri Ram Jai Ram Jai Ram by worshipers.
Agrasen ki Baoli
One of the country’s most important heritage sites, the Agrasen ki Baoli recently featured in the popular Aamir Khan starrer PK. Believed to have been built in the 14th century by King Agrasen, Agrasen ki Baoli is a huge step-well which was meant to store water in order to enable a continuous supply of water to the city. It also served as a cool respite for travelers. The stunning architecture of the step-well makes it worth a visit. DO SEE Everything you should know about the haunted Agrasen ki Baoli in Delhi
Odean and Rivoli vintage cinemas
There was a time when Connaught Place was all about cinemas. Back in the 1920s, halls were not about commercial movies and song and dance. They were known for hosting Urdu plays, Russian ballets and silent films. The elite often visited Connaught place which housed some of the finest heritage cinemas. Odean and Rivoli are two cinemas which have survived the test of time and are still some of the best places to catch some good movies.
Gurudwara Bangla Sahib
Known to be one of the most prominent places of worship for the Sikh community and also a great pilgrim site for people of all religions, the Gurudwara Bangal Sahib is ideal for those looking for a peaceful and quiet getaway. The stunning decor of the gurudwara which was once a modest place of residence will mesmerize you. The folk music played here is soothing and will take you on a spiritual journey. NOW SEE 5 restaurants in Delhi where you can have a meal under Rs 500
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