Mumbai: BMC Begins Malabar Hill's Banganga Tank Restoration Project Into 3 Phases

Mumbai: BMC Begins Malabar Hill's Banganga Tank Restoration Project Into 3 Phases

Banganga Tank is an 11th century Grade-1 heritage precinct belonging to Gaud Saraswat Brahmin Temple Trust and maintained by the Maharashtra Archaeological department. There are 16 prominent temples, including Kashi and Kavale Math, in the precinct. It is one of the last remaining natural water bodies in the city.

FPJ News ServiceUpdated: Thursday, May 02, 2024, 12:59 AM IST
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Mumbai: BMC Begins Malabar Hill's Banganga Tank Restoration Project Into 3 Phases |

Mumbai: The BMC has undertaken desilting works in the precinct of Banganga tank as part of its restoration project. The face lift project of the centuries-old tank located on Malabar Hill was launched last year. The overall project is divided into three phases with an estimated cost of Rs. 12 crores.

Banganga Tank is an 11th century Grade-1 heritage precinct belonging to Gaud Saraswat Brahmin Temple Trust and maintained by the Maharashtra Archaeological department. There are 16 prominent temples, including Kashi and Kavale Math, in the precinct. It is one of the last remaining natural water bodies in the city.

Though it is close to the Arabian Sea, the rectangular step-water tank is known to store fresh water. As the tank area was encroached on and was dilapidated, the BMC undertook restoration work on this heritage structure last year.

The first phase of work includes improving stone steps, reconstructing Deepstambhas (lamp pillars) within the lake area, establishing a circular road named 'Bhakti Marg' around the lake, developing a Missing Link to Banganga Tank with an approved road width of 18.30 meters, and removing encroachments on the stone steps around the tank is next to completion.

The BMC has undertaken desilting of the tank which is expected to be completed in a month's time. "The tank has a very narrow access which we have plans to widen by removing those structures that are blocking it,” said a civic official.

"Around 13 huts located on the lake entrance steps were relocated, with residents resettled in nearby Slum Rehabilitation Project. The silt from the tank will be removed carefully by skilled manpower under the Archaeology Department's guidance to prevent damage to the ancient stones at the bottom and surrounding the tank," said Sharad Ughade, assistant municipal commissioner of D ward.

A govt resolution was issued in Nov 2022 to declare the Banganga Tank a tourist spot. As per the civic officials, the restoration works are being done after seeking approval from the Mumbai Heritage Conservation Committee (MHCC) and the Archaeological Survey of India.

The second phase encompasses painting the facades of buildings visible from Banganga Tank in a uniform manner, creating murals and sculptures on the walls of buildings adjacent to the lake. While in the third phase, a comprehensive corridor will be constructed between Banganga lake and the Arabian Sea, with slum dwellers being rehabilitated. Additionally, parks, open seating arrangements, and public spaces will be created, drawing inspiration from Varanasi.

The restoration works of the Banganga precincts also includes changing the appearance of the historically important Ram Kund. Ram Kund, which is situated 400m from Banganga Tank, but within the precincts, leads toward the sea. According to legend, Lord Rama, one of the most widely worshipped Hindu deities, conducted the immersion of the ashes of his father, King Dashrath, in this kund on the 13th day following his demise.

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