Showing posts with label Bhopal. Show all posts
Continued from here.
Though Bhopal's claim to fame in bollywood remains the character of Soorma Bhopali potrayed by Jagdeep in Sholay, recently Bhopal has been the shoot location for a few bollywood movies. Prakash Jha who is shooting Rajneeti in Bhopal, said:
"... he had come to Bhopal for the first time in 1997 for the promotion of his film Mrityudand which featured Madhuri Dixit, Om Puri and Ayub Khan [and] was impressed by the beauty of the city even then and decided to return to the city to shoot his next film.Jha said Bhopal now has big hotels and good approach roads and that in the coming days, he may shoot at other locations in Madhya Pradesh."
The point here was not to highlight the bollywood connection (of which there are many ...), but to highlight that praise for Bhopal's infrastructure is not limited to commited Bhopalites like me :-).
A quick peek at Bhopal's Wikipedia page would tell you that Bhopal is a promising city - for example the Indian Space Research Organisation established a Master Control Facility in Ayodhya Nagar, to control the movements of satellites, second only after Hassan or that Bhopal is one of the six cities chosen to have an All India Institute of Medical Sciences campus apart from Delhi (this campus is right behind my house in Saket Nagar).
However, what is vital is the emergence of another center of techno-commercial development like BHEL was in the 70s-80s. Till a few years ago an IT Park would have been the answer - but with the global economy in recession, IT is no more the sunrise sector. Bhopal is quite suitable for industries which are need knowledge capital which means qualified human resource. And qualified human resource is always attracted to places which can provide a good lifestyle.
As of now the only sector which has been able to take advantage of the above factor has been education with a plethora of colleges/training institutions being opened in the city in the past 5 years but there are sure some other sectors like food processing, renewable energy and biotech which can take advantage of the resources the city has to offer.
I believe the beginning needs to be made by the State administration in attracting entreprenerus to start up in the city by providing them incentives. Lets hope someone's listening out there.
Living in Mumbai, its not difficult to find people who have no idea even about neighbouring cities like Nasik, leave alone cities like Bhopal. It pains even more when people are all praises for cities like Chandigarh (which is a good city, but to be frank a little hyped) and treat Bhopal akin to a village.
No dearth of places to go on outings in an around Bhopal Decent number of good restaurants and food joints and equally good number of places to simply hang out ...
Being born and brought up in Bhopal, one knows that this is a city with many positives; to enumerate a few:
- A beautiful landscape dotted with parks, ponds and lakes. The hilly terrain on which the city is built gives it a unique ambience - roads rising up and down the slopes, formations of row houses on ascending tracts, long winding roads along the lakes and parks ...
- Superb infrastructure compared to the size of population it supports. Unlike most old cities in India, Bhopal has very good amenities - whether it is underground drainage or roads and traffic signals.
- Smooth roads in most arterial tracks
- Cleanliness in most of the new Bhopal areas is a lot better than other cities
- Well maintained squares and turns
- Roads lined up with trees all over the city
- Widely distributed residential colonies leading to non-congested roads and removing the need to create too many flyovers and subways to manage congestion
- Enough subways and flyover to criss cross railway lines
- Many good schools and colleges of repute which have churned out many a scholar who have been at illustrious positions in India and abroad
However, what separates Bhopal from most other small cities is not its infra, neither its beauty - it is the culture of the city. Unlike other small cities which seem to sober out on most days after 7 or 8 PM in the evening, Bhopal is a place that has, since my childhood, been lively till late into the night.
Whether it is lakeside, the restaurants or the markets - the city definitely does not sleep till 10-11 in the night. And this liveliness gets a further boost during the festive seasons - especially Navratri leading up to Dussera. This lively culture which permeates the city may be a complete antithesis to the 'night life' as it is known by people living in Metros, but is a passionate celebration of human society nevertheless.
There are many cultural traditions local to Bhopal which date back centuries like the Ijtima but post independence, Bhopal also emerged as a boiling pot giving rise to new festivities (like the Durga Puja at BHEL Kali Bari or Navratri Jhankis at New market) which are celebrated by all Bhopalites without their own ethnic/regional affiliations.